Am I sad that I am losing half of my senior year? Certainly, there is no doubt that I greatly value the comforting presence of my peers and the wonderful set of teachers I’ve had this year.
Am I that sad though? Not at all.
After grinding through college applications and standardized tests, I very much welcome this change in pace. While COVID-19 destroyed the sad, pathetic effigy of a social life that took me four years to construct, COVID-19 has also finally given me the opportunity to type this piece at 3:51 a.m. while wiping cheeto dust off of my fingers. It has given me time to relax and pursue many of the little things I wanted to do before I enter this final phase of my childhood and move onto adulthood.
Sure, the e-learning assignments cost me roughly ten hours of my weekday. Sure, I can not really talk to my friends. Sure, I haven’t seen what outside looks like since March 20 and bought a Disney Plus subscription.
And boy, with that Disney Plus subscription I binge watched everything from “Star Wars” to the wide assortment of Marvel superhero films available in Disney’s catalog. I wiped the cobwebs that covered my old Xbox One and got the cheapest copy of “Doom Eternal” from my local Walmart and beat the full campaign in just nine hours. I got to talk to and help my sisters with their homework, something that I deeply regret not being able to do more of in my high school career.
This is a degree of freedom I haven’t felt since I got bit by a dog at McCollum park and got to miss an AP Euro mastery test.
In addition to this freedom, I have not had a single ounce of worry in my head. Isolation has let me concentrate on myself and not be burdened by my insecurities. The remaining schoolwork I get is, quite frankly, some of the easiest work I’ve done.
I lost my senior year. But I managed to replace it by pursuing the small aspects of my life that I so often neglect.
I am, however, deeply aware of how badly COVID-19 has been for several of my friends and family.
The loneliness can be unbearable. The discomfort of losing structure in one’s day-to-day life is overwhelming. The sleep schedule looks like the celery I left in my locker during this quarantine.
COVID-19 has stripped the vitality and excitement of being able to attend school and have new experiences for many people and not just myself.
From my own thoughts with fighting such emotions, the only thing you can do is to try to restore such vitality even in these very limiting circumstances.
Explore a topic you never had a chance to do. Pursue your passions. Foster relationships with your family.
There is still a life that can be made from this chaos. I believe it is important to not let COVID-19 take that opportunity away from you.