My parents aren’t the type to send care packages.
Firstly, they wouldn’t know what to include. At home, we don’t really do nonperishable packaged snacks, which are a huge ingredient in most packages. Homemade cookies? I’m not sure I’ve ever seen my mom bake. Small impulse buys? We’re generally frugal, so we avoid spending money on “stuff” whenever possible.
Plus, I go to school all the way across the country. Paying $15 to ship a box of random goods is ridiculous. And I knew that. When I left for college, I didn’t expect care packages.
I didn’t know it would bother me, though.
My first roommate constantly received huge boxes from her family. Her mom sent cookies, blondies, whoopie pies (which I didn’t know existed before living with her). Her younger sisters sent drawings and friendship bracelets. If she was sick, a box of cough drops and NyQuil would magically appear. Sometimes her mom would write my name and a nice message for me on the card, as if the gift was for both of us, even though my roommate & I didn’t really talk.
At holidays, my friends got themed packages. Jewish mothers sent matzoh and kosher goods at Passover. Other friends got advent calendars and candy canes in December. On Valentine’s Day everyone got a care package from their parents with candies and cute cards.
One of my friends saw how frustrated I was seeing people squeal over their parents’ generosity that she made a care package for me. It was such a kind gesture–one I’ll never forget–but it can’t replace getting something from home.
While I didn’t expect anything, my mom saw that the care package issue meant a lot to me. Finally, at the beginning of this year, I received my first care package: Goldfish, my favorite chocolate from Trader Joe’s (which we don’t have in Ithaca), feminism-themed sticky notes, and a “Dammit Doll” for aggressive moments.
It was worth the wait.
This post is part of my April A to Z Challenge. For more All Things College posts, click here.