Home, family, friends and good food are all things that the average student gets to experience during the long college winter break.
However, my teammate and I only get to experience this in small amounts.
It is tough. I personally have not been back home since school started. It is fun to be at school with your friends and being able to be somewhat independent, but sometimes you need a little rest and home always cures whatever problem that this world brings.
We usually get the chance to go home for about a week over break and for me, with seven siblings, one dog, two cats, two crazy parents and a 98-year-old aunt who acts like the grandmother from the movie “Wedding Crashers,” a week is all I need.
I do enjoy the week back home for a chance to relax and see everyone. Being home gives me the time to eat good food which I can’t seem to stress enough.
When the week’s over it’s sad to leave again, but I’ve been playing basketball since I was 2 years old so I’m used to having to sacrifice to play all year round.
Thankfully, it’s not too bad staying on campus with no one else around. In some cases, it’s actually pretty relaxing. It allows you to bond more with your teammates and for me I can bond more with my Playstation 3, my guitar, a.k.a. Lorili, and whatever the latest Nicholas Sparks book happens to be.
We practice twice a day over break at 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., then it’s usually the mall, games, movies or music after that for the rest of the night. Since the cafeteria is closed, we get meal money so we can eat out every night, which is a glorious substitute for the cafeteria.
Most people always tell me, “It must suck being here all winter,” and, yes, in some cases it does, but for the most part it’s actually extremely comforting.
To be able to walk across campus in the morning with nothing but the sound of birds in the air, the thick white blanket of snow covering the ground as if it was about to put it to sleep, and a campus surrounded by empty parking lots, it’s truly beautiful.
Imagine always being able to get a parking space, without having to circle Dixon or Founder’s for three hours hoping someone leaves to free up a space.
I also can’t stress enough that being a part of a team is a true honor and if you want to be a successful one you have to truly be a cohesive unit.
Now trust me when I say when you spend all day every day with the same 18 guys for a month and a half straight, you become a “cohesive unit.” I mean if we became any more cohesive we’d be crossing the line and that’s another article all together.
But the whole time is not bonding and entertainment. We all understand we are here for business.
We know that we are practicing hard so we can get better and get a step closer to accomplishing our goal and winning a championship. And I will be the first to admit it is hard to keep the same intensity everyday, but we only come out better for it.