Mike Kueber's Blog

October 28, 2012

Homesickness

Filed under: Relationships — Mike Kueber @ 11:02 pm
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Recently, while visiting with my son Jimmy at Franciscan University in Ohio, I asked him about the status of his San Antonio friends, especially his friend who was prevented from being his roommate because of an application glitch – i.e., his friend submitted his dormitory application on time while Jimmy didn’t.  Jimmy shocked me when he said his friend had returned to San Antonio after only a few days on campus, apparently because of homesickness.  And Jimmy impressed me when he declared in a very nonjudgmental way that some people just aren’t ready to leave home.

Jimmy’s attitude impressed me, not only because he was nonjudgmental, but also because I’m a person with a lifelong problem with homesickness that I briefly touched on with a post to my blog when Jimmy drove off to Ohio a couple of months ago.  In that post, I mentioned how this problem affected my decision to go to UND for college instead of ND, but it also contributed to me leaving Army ROTC in 1974 and then leaving Texas to return to North Dakota in 1981.

There is a lot of interesting on-line information about homesickness.  Much of it focuses on the transition from high school to college, but there is also recognition that it is not limited to the young (e.g., me).  And there are suggestions for how to better cope with it – such as, it is helpful and accurate to remind yourself that, as with most emotions, “This, too, shall pass,” if you give it time.   

On-line sources will also advise that homesickness has nothing to do with home, but rather has to do with separation from your environment or people you feel attached to.  That explains why I had to work hard to avoid tearing up as I was saying good-by to Jimmy earlier today. 

Homesickness may not be as bad when you are leaving a person to go home, or when a person leaves your home, but it still hurts like hell.

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