Riley Stinson

Right when you feel like you have everything planned out, seeing your future unfold before your eyes, a global pandemic breaks loose and crushes your dreams. Being a junior in high school is stressful enough already, let’s just throw COVID-19 in there to spice things up. 

When school got canceled at first I could not have been more relieved. It was the break we all needed from SAT and ACT prep, but to find out that all of the hard work we put into our scores might not even count, that’s when reality hit me. This is serious. Everything I had been working toward just seemed to be gone in a snap of a finger: college tours canceled, testing being pushed back, all of my volunteer opportunities disappearing.

The worst part comes when panic sets in, you feel completely helpless. You have to sit and watch as the world you once knew gets infected with the virus, wondering if it will hit a loved one or a schoolmate. What more can a 17-year-old do than just sit at home and do puzzles with her mom? 

The answer is nothing, complete and absolutely nothing. What I do to occupy my time these days consists of nothing more than time-wasting. Get up, shower, cook, eat, walk the dog, puzzle, paint, watch tv and fall asleep, repeat. What I once dreaded every morning has now become something I seem to reminisce about. I realize I took for granted the stupid lunch drama and hallway meetups. I miss the challenge school gave me, as surprising as that sounds coming from a student who would stay up until 3 a.m. studying to guarantee her all A honor roll.

And with this nothingness comes time to grow and reflect and grow into this new school environment and into the lifestyle we are facing.

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