Sitting down and taking time to write feels strange, though for the first time in a while quite relaxing. The last time I remember trying to write was early spring of this year for an essay I had no motivation to finish. To say I felt lost would be an understatement. You see throughout my quarantine, like most people I didn’t do much. Yet anything I tried to do felt like a task to hard to handle.
I went into 2020 extremely hopeful, I was in a new relationship, I had great friends, and school was going well. Though a few weeks in I started to feel this overwhelming sense of fear, I was on edge constantly. Things seemed to be going too well and instead of enjoying the good I was just waiting for something bad to happen. So undoubtedly I ended up letting the bad overwhelm the good. I remember a concerned friend asking what I longed for the most at the time, my answer, “peace”. Little did I know what the rest of the year had in store.
I took for granted the certainties that life had provided for me in the past. I was able to go to school, the grocery store, the mall, friends and families houses without any appreciation for the little things.
The morning of March 13th changed that for me. I was woken up by my dad pounding on my door telling me it was time to get up. To which I of course responded with “I don’t want to”. Yet when he opened the door to tell me school was shutting down for a month, I didn’t hesitate to jump out of bed, in order to figure out what was going on.
The school day felt unreal. Nobody had any answers, every person was just as confused as the next. Still we all planned on coming back from Spring Break ready to take the SAT and finish the school year. The first week felt like the polar vortex, fun at first, but towards the end we were ready to go back. I specifically was ready to take my SAT in order to send my scores to the colleges I planned on applying to, that was something I felt had to happen.
So when school got called off for the rest of the year and my SAT got cancelled I felt numb. I didn’t know what I was supposed to do with myself. Sure I had work, but there’s only so much socialization one can get from the same few coworkers at a part time job. I started to feel extremely lonely, still I hated when people texted because it didn’t feel authentic, and just reminded me how unusual life was in that I wasn’t able to see them.
By May our family trips had been cancelled, and I had ended my first relationship, you’d expect that this would cause me to feel even more ‘lost’. Yet it was just the opposite. I was learning how to find myself for the first time without leaning on other people to fulfill my happiness. I shut my phone off for the majority of the day, and filled the rest of my day with painting, playing music, running, and doing other things that I enjoyed.
For the first time in months I was starting to feel that “peace” I had been longing for back in January. No matter what was happening between family members in my house, I needed to stay inside. So I had to figure out how to be okay in my own company, something that had scared me for so long. I was forced to confront my emotions head on and find ways to deal with them, and learned more about myself in the process. Sure I occasionally talked to and missed my friends, but I wasn’t reliant on them. I was becoming more confident in my independence and found out who my true friends were along the way.
And here I sit in September of 2020, not necessarily at peace but closer to it than I was in January of 2020. I get to see most of my friends on a regular basis again. Senior year is off to a crazy, but great start I could’ve never predicted. I still have yet to take my SAT, I’m not sure what college I’ll be attending or what I’ll be studying. Still I know that whatever happens I’ll have the strength to make it through myself and that’s something I’m incredibly proud of.