Here in the Oliverian Valley, the leaves have fallen and Mt. Moosilauke, with its white cap, rises majestically above the green valley, speckled with early winter snow, which comes and goes almost as easily as the wind some days – winter is abundantly upon us!
As our students prepare for their winter break, the atmosphere often presents with a heightened sense of anxiety around transition, the holidays, a new schedule, seeing old friends, and the many other exciting, and sometimes more difficult realities of leaving one place to return to another for a time.
It is not uncommon for many of us to face these anxieties this time of year, when expectations run high, pressure mounts, and new year’s resolutions lurk in the all too near future. With this in mind, we turned to our Counseling Team, Kenzie, Jennifer, and Sage, to share their thoughts on how to best engage with potential stressors, and enjoy a wonderful conclusion to the year 2023!
To our families having their children home for the break,
The holiday season can be filled with great joy and excitement as well as nerves and anticipation. After being at school for the fall semester, most students have gotten into the regular routines at Oli and the transition to home routine can be difficult for both students and their families. Try to remember to have compassion for one another and celebrate even small growth and victories. Try to incorporate exercise, intentional time together, and gratitude into your visit together. Be patient with the different emotions or behaviors that may pop up around transitions, change, and holidays and remember that you are all human!
Have a great break and be in touch if you are in need of support.
The Holiday/Winter Season often adorns us with mixed emotions of joy, happiness, sadness, anxiety, hope, etc. It is also a transitional season into a new calendar year where we may reflect on the year’s events, trials, tribulations, and what may be in our future, often leading to more questions than answers.
As we spend time with our loved ones this season and always, we should remember to do our best to be present in all moments, traditions, and while making memories. Students have grown emotionally and academically over the past several months. Open conversations about what it means for someone to feel a certain way may help each other feel heard, seen, and appreciated. We are all on a continuous journey of learning and navigating this beautiful life and having folks along the way who can support us often helps that journey feel less daunting and our dreams more attainable.
Love and light,
Your adolescents are in the midst of substantial and complex growth. Changes and adaptations to yours and their lives are continuously occurring while they are away at boarding school. Be patient with not only your student but also with yourself. No one is expecting these transitions to be perfect. Within an honest reflection, holding a need for precise and perfect transitions reinforces an unrealistic expectation for both yourself and your student. This expectation can be very difficult for ourselves to meet.
See if you can hold these expectations within a compassionate and loving awareness. Fostering such an awareness can help us compassionately release from the presupposition of a seamless and picturesque transition. Just because it isn’t perfect, or perhaps different then you had planned, doesn’t mean it isn’t worth being present for. Freeing ourselves from these expectations will allow situations that don’t go as planned to be met with compassion, gentle loving curiosity and a deeper sense of present-awareness.
Be well & Happy Holidays!