We ALL have seen the news now. The breakout of the COVID-19 (sorry I use medical/technical terms oops) pandemic has left the world in shambles. People are getting laid off, essential employees are overworked and fighting on the frontline of this pandemic, people are losing weddings, funerals, proms, graduations, family members, friends, you name it. The bottom line is EVERYONE is affected by this pandemic. There is not ONE person that has bigger problems than the other in this case. After seeing multiple people act like they’re the only person that has lost something during this pandemic, I knew I had to speak up in a positive way. As you have read the title, yes I am a class of 2020 college senior. As a college senior, I am losing things just like a high school senior. It is hard to wait to graduate, but on the bright side, at least my school’s graduation was rescheduled for another date. In reality, I DID NOT go to college for other people. I did not go to college because I wanted a degree, I went to college because I wanted to get an education. I wanted to become a medical professional (I’m Pre-Physical Therapy for those who don’t know!). I didn’t do it for an instagram post, I did it for MYSELF. Think about that. I am proud of myself for going through college wether I would have gotten a ceremony or not.
My point is, as sad as I am for losing a lot of “lasts” as a senior, having time during this pandemic has given me so much time to reflect on myself. I have been going on walks every day since the stay at home order has been ordered. Not only is it good exercise, but it’s great for me mentally. Walking around, getting fresh air, and getting vitamin D in my life has really given me the opportunity to recollect my thoughts and to clear my mind. I have been able to think about myself and how I can improve myself, and to even work on professional development. I have been doing things that I would have been doing during my year off before PT school that I am doing now! I joined a Dance Medicine Organization (IADMS), got a HIPAA policy certification, and signed up for continuing education through the NYU Harkness Center for Dance Injuries, which is basically all things I would have started during my time off! I am so grateful that I had the time to work on these things, so they can go on my resume and LinkedIn profile (which I LOVE being on now).
One of the biggest things that being in this pandemic is that good things take TIME. Yes THAT cliche saying. Maybe this is a universal sign that in order to get to the good, we must go through the bad. Maybe the economy will flourish after this pandemic, maybe more people will get their jobs back, maybe the curve will flatten soon. I don’t know, but it does help to look on the positive side. During my college experience, I was finding out on my own how to be patient about things. This pandemic has been one of those supplemental lessons on being patient for me. I am very confused, but I have to be patient (maybe surviving through the events of Y2K, 9/11, debt crisis’s, H1N1, and many others has also helped as well haha) . I am unsure on if I should even apply for more PT tech jobs, or if I would still get an interview, or if my future grad school interviews will be online now, or if my dance studio job would not be on zoom anymore. This is hard for me personally even though I am taking a year off before PT school, there’s still so much more I want to do to make myself a more competitive applicant, but I am just not sure I will be able to do that. This feeling does make me feel anxious and stressed, but I’m still glad I was able to find extra education and professional development in virtual ways so I’m prepared to do more clinical professional development when the stay at home order is officially released!
Enough about me, but I really wanted to make this post saying that I feel for all seniors, high school, college, professional graduates, etc. It’s sad losing some of our “lasts”, but you guys should know that this is only temporary. It’ll make us all stronger, and anyone else in this world, not just seniors! It’s okay to grieve during this time. It’s okay to not do anything. It’s okay to not be productive, and it’s also okay to be productive. It doesn’t matter what you do during this pandemic, because no matter what, this is a time that will make all of us stronger. This stay at home order is only temporary, and this is not going to be occurring for the rest of our lives. During this time, it’s important to remind ourselves about what there is to be grateful for. There are people that are dying, and so many people that are living worse than others during this time. It is NOT just seniors that have problems in this world. Things WILL be rescheduled, don’t worry about “the world not giving seniors a break”. Instead, maybe think about all the good memories you made, the lessons you learned, and how you are most likely SAFE during this quarantine. Being SAFE and AT HOME are UNDERRATED blessings, and some of you don’t realize that. Take the time to list three things you’re thankful for during this time, or call a friend or family member to check up on them, surround yourself with things you like to do, do anything that makes you happy. This is a hard time, but we will get through this. To anyone in this world and to my fellow class of 2020 mates, WE’VE GOT THIS!!!!
Not leaving yet! This is your reminder to stay safe, healthy, wash your hands, get active when you need to, and most importantly, DO NOT HANG OUT WITH SOMEONE IF YOU ARE NOT QUARANTINED WITH THEM. Use FaceTime, zoom, i don’t know, the PHONE to get a hold of someone. Thank you!!!!
Also a HUGE thank you to restaurant workers, store workers, healthcare and medical professionals, and any other employee that I did not mention for helping out the world and for fighting firsthand on this pandemic. I am humbled enough to one day join you in times like this. It is not today, but it will be someday. You are all amazing!