At the end of the 2009 Summer Challenge program, I wrote about the post-program blues, and the “now what?” that inevitably follows the end of a powerful Hyde experience. Sundays after Family Weekends are always a mix of those same “now what?” moments. Do I take a nap? Hang out with my kids? Work in the yard? Grade essays? Get some exercise? The list of “now what?” goes on, but I know that I need to be careful and be intentional about my next move on these Sundays.
The thing is, there is a lethargy that calls to me dangerously, pulling me away from my kids and wife, into the deep sleep of a three hour nap. That is no good though as it leaves me even more exhausted and mostly in a zombie state. I’ve learned to vary my activities to decompress from these cathartic weekends.
I think the experience of the Hyde Family Weekend is a unique opportunity for families and faculty. Even now, after coming through what I calculate to be my twenty-fifth weekend, I am struck by the deep introspection and the powerful feeling of community. There are intimate moments when families reveal the love upon which the family is built, moments that are near impossible to describe. These are juxtaposed with the hilarity of singing and dancing with the same ease I see expressed by my three year-old daughter. These are the pieces that take digesting and leave me feeling like I’ve just finished an epic Thanksgiving dinner. I leave these weekends satisfied, stuffed with my own epiphanies and gravy covered moments. Thank you to all those who participated in this and any Hyde Family Weekend, taking the risk to reach for something greater in yourself and your family.