I was avoiding writing anything related to coronavirus, but I think it's inevitable.
I'm a senior in college. When it comes to one of the worst times in life for a pandemic, this is one of them.
I feel so many emotions. But the most prominent one is anger.
I'm angry that everything has been cancelled. This past weekend was supposed to be an accepted students day and mock wedding.
I deeply enjoy giving tours on accepted students day and welcoming the potential new students to campus.
Mock wedding, which at Fairfield is exactly what it sounds like, a fake wedding. We voted for who would be our fake bride, fake groom, and fake priest. There would be a fake ceremony and a real reception. But of course, that is a tradition we are unable to keep.
I'm angry at the other students that aren't seniors in college that are complaining that their year has been cut short. My mind is saying that I shouldn't be mad, of course they're upset too, but in my heart I'm heated. I'm green with envy that they will get to have all of the experiences that I don't get to have.
Something that has been difficult is explaining to my 91 and 86 year old grandparents how upsetting this is. They didn't have the social college experience I have had. It's hard for them to understand what I'm truly missing, making it hard for them to relate to me right now.
Some of the events I have tried to explain I'll be missing include Clam Jam and multiple different formals.
Clam Jam is a huge catered party with a live DJ on the beach. That is hosted by Fairfield and it's open bar for those who are 21. I have gone for the past two years, but as event staff. This would have been the first year I would get to dress up in cute clothes and actually attend it with my friends. No restrictions.
I was supposed to host 2 separate semi formal events at my house. We have a garage in my backyard that is perfect for parties. This year I was actually going to ask someone to be my date to formal, something I haven't done with I asked a friend to be a date to my junior prom (if that even counts). I was going to push through my fear and actually ask someone I was interested in, an opportunity that I will hopefully have at something else one day. I was excited to dress up and host those formals.
I was excited to spend time on the beach with my friends in the warm weather. I wanted to take full advantage of having a house right near the beach.
Graduation was supposed to be the day before my birthday. It was going to be a week packed full of celebration, in beautiful weather, at a beautiful location. And now there will be nothing.
Aside from the anger, I feel empty. I had so much to look forward to and now there is nothing. Literally nothing. Not even a job to begin after I graduate because the job market is in rough shape. I'm a very imaginative person. Every night I usually fall asleep imagining what's going to come the next day or in the future. But now I lay there trying to distract myself from the emptiness of having nothing to look forward to.
Something else that is slowing eating away at me is the fact that I'm single. The other day I got angry with my best friend for saying she was missing her boyfriend. I snapped at her saying at least she has one and she has him to look forward to going back to. I don't have that. I don't have a boyfriend to look forward to seeing. I quickly apologized to her because of course she misses him, and who am I to feel like my feelings are worse than hers? She's going through the same thing I am. The feeling of being alone is there in all of us.
The other emotion that's has gone about in my head is selfishness (if that's considered an emotion). Because I live off campus I could go back and spend time with my friends before returning home. But that feels selfish to me. I would be exposing anyone I come in contact with (just in case I have been exposed). I know that I need to do my part and stay home, because there are people out there working their butts off to make this all stop.
Having already had anxiety, this is not helping. I'm the type of person who likes to be in control. I get anxious when I can't plan or be in control. I like schedules, plans, and lists. But with this, I can't plan or control. The only thing that has kept my anxiety at bay is that there's actually no way I can control any of this. It's so far out of my hands that I can't do ANYTHING. And somehow the fact that there is absolutely nothing I can change, makes it easier than having a little bit of something that I'm having a hard time controlling because that's not even possible.
While I'm not even sure if that last part made sense, what does make sense is that it's okay to not be okay right now, and I have accepted that. It's okay to feel anything I'm feeling. No one has really experienced anything like this before. This is new for everyone. I want to say that I've gotten something (besides a new fitness routine) out of this whole situation, but I haven't yet. I'm still grieving the loss of my senior year of college and dealing with the anger, jealously, even fear of being selfish (because I know that I still have it better than so many others). For now I just want others to understand that for us college seniors, yes we understand that we are safe at home, but we're still hurting.
I guess if there is one thing I have gotten from this so far. I'm never going to stop myself from doing something I want to do again. Whether it's going out to the bar, making a move on a cute guy, or just taking a few extra minutes to spend with my friends. That's cliche and just something I know I'll never take for granted again. But I'm hoping something bigger comes out of this. For now, I'm still figuring that out.