A Year in a Pandemic

Alexa Almeda, Reporter

Last year, around this time I was very happy to have finished my chemistry final and head home for spring break. I said goodbye to my friends and teachers, not knowing that my two week vacation would turn into five months of isolation.

Now at first spring break had been extended one  week, I was thrilled. More vacation time! However as one week turned into weeks and then eventually months I began to realize the seriousness of the pandemic. 

The virus itself has brought upon hardships for many people, things like losing their jobs, loved ones, and even having to battle with having COVID. 

As a teenager, I personally did not mind the early dismissal from school or having a break from work, at first that is. However these were my only ways of interacting with people.  

The friendships I had slowly went from close friends to merely acquaintances. I am normally an outgoing person. A people person, I like making people laugh. Communication is the main thing that affected these things for me. I had lost the ability to express myself to others. 

Now you may say that there is social media and messaging to reach out, and don’t get me wrong I did use those as much as I could to reach out to the people I knew were really going through it. However text messages and social media posts are not the same as that raw feeling you get when you speak with someone, actually communicating and being able to show and express your feelings.  I took my short talks with others for granted. 

Since I had lost most of my “friends” to lack of communication. I became more introverted. I know that I could have been the one to reach out to people, but phones work both ways. As I stopped being the first one to check up on people I realized that no one really ever checked up on me. 

Being alone was a journey of self discovery that was very much unexpected as it was needed. Now I do want to say that it can become addicting. You get so used to being at peace and drama free that you no longer believe that you need to talk to people. However, if you keep all your thoughts to yourself, they eventually build up and will emotionally drown you. 

That is one thing a lot of teenagers go through that they choose to not speak about, our mental health. I would be lying if I said that throughout this whole time I never broke down and cried without even knowing why.

For example, once remote learning started I thought this year was going to fly by and things will eventually get back to how they were. The first quarter passed and I thought I had this thing in the bag and I even preferred remote learning over in-person. Things took a turn for the worst when second quarter came along. I had lost any and all motivation I had before. I began slacking in every single class and didn’t care. I realized that remote learning was very toxic for me. 

I am a people person, and needed to be with people. Being stuck at home just made it worse. Now that a year has passed by I am thankful that I went through what I went through.

I hope that this year will be the year that I get to show the world what version of Alexa this pandemic made.