Reading and Writing Our Way Forward
My name is Elijah Nino, and if I'm honest, 2020 has been quite the experience for me. I mean, I'm sure it's been the experience of a lifetime for everybody, good and bad, but for me, it all just seemed to mesh into a storm of horrid. For example, just a month into 2020, I was dealt the hardest blow I think I may ever face, which was the passing of my grandmother that I loved dearly. It hit me like a truck, that's for sure, and while it may be forever in my thoughts, I learned a lesson from it all, and it's one I may never forget. It stems from something she would always tell me whenever I seemed stumped with grief or an immovable obstacle, and that was still to keep pressing on no matter what because at the end of the day, the world will move and progress with or without you. That lesson, coupled with the hardships ahead of me is what keeps me going and brings me to terms with the life I have ahead and the life I leave behind. But as far as tragic happenings go, this was luckily the only real one I had to deal with last year.
As I said earlier, my grandma's passing away was probably the worst thing that happened to me in 2020, but sadly it certainly was not the last of bad things to come in 2020. To make matters worse, a global pandemic was spreading all over America and specifically New York. It scared me to death, and it was something I've never experienced before. It wasn't so much the fact that a virus was spreading like wildfire, but it was the fact that I'd be in a complete lockdown and isolated from everyone around me. It was a lot to take in at the time, but nowadays, as I type this in the comfort of my home months into the lockdown, I feel at peace and focus on my goals. This wasn't always the case, though, cause, as I said earlier, I was scared for my life when the pandemic first hit in America, and as was everyone else, it was pure silence for the first time in history since Living in Washington Heights
Never before in my life have I ever been in complete silence while there, but when that pandemic hit, all you can hear was a car every few minutes and the birds chirping, all the energy and excitement in the area stripped away within seconds, and I couldn't believe it. With the silence came a steady and constant amount of isolation due to the outbreak's potential spread and ability to spread at the time, but little did we all know that we'd be stuck in a state of isolation for almost a year now with no real signs of it getting better even with the vaccine we have. As for where this plays into my story it left me with a sense of dread and doubt of the future. I lost my way to put it simply and regressed into a slump where nothing was done, not even classwork, and it would have ruined me had I not fixed it up in the final days of the school year. This brings my story full circle and us in 2021: a new president, a working vaccine with minimal side effects, and a fresh start on life ripe with opportunity and progress.
Now while I can't fully say my old habits are all gone, and I'm in a better place, I can say for a fact that I am 100% a better percent than what I was once and am continually trying to move forward no matter the cost. I truly think the only reason I have even slightly changed my view of the world is the isolation of the nationwide pandemic. I can't fully explain it, but it was just all the silence and thinking that I could do while alone. It was cleansing in a way, and it washed my stress away. Nowadays, I spend most of my hours meditating and finding inner peace in Taoism's spirit as it is one of the very few things I believe. To this day, I will always live up to my grandma's words and legacy and push past all my restraints and overcome anything to reach my goals because progress and change will always be inevitable in my world.