"The Things I Miss"

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"The Things I Miss"

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Reflections of what a student misses during the COVID-19 pandemic

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The things I miss….

The two-minute warning bell at my school that played songs before classes.

All the miniature Eiffel Towers in my French class.

The "Starry Night" mural and the sunflowers decorating my art class.

The people I miss….

Friends to sit and laugh with, to share my worries with, to vent my frustrations to, to simply talk to, face-to-face, without screens between us.

Family; my adopted baby sister, bouncing at my feet, babbling for me to hold her; my grandparents, the most vulnerable to sickness, the most missed, the ones I ache to hug; my cousin, feeling just as isolated as I do and wondering what the coming school year holds.

Teachers; my French teacher, who always cares so dearly about her students, who was so excited to see us graduate; my Art teacher, who tries to keep us engaged and creative, even with the virtual divide; my History teacher, who continues to keep us all connected and interacting, even if it is from a distance.

The feelings I miss….

Anticipation for the long-awaited Advanced Placement tests. An odd sentiment, I know. But, even though the tests will still happen, some have changed so much that I feel the effort I put into the courses, the years I put into some, may not have been worth it.

Love for isolation; sitting alone, curled up with a book; being aggravated any time someone intrudes on your peace. Now that it is required, isolation isn't soothing; it is anxiety-inducing, it is stressful, it is lonely.

The desire to learn; the absence of exhaustion born from loneliness replaced with a longing for knowledge.

The simple relief of a hug.

The times I will miss….

Sitting after school with my friends in the library, like we did every day, joking around and working together.

Walking down the Hill in my cap and gown, receiving my diploma, being proud of the fact that I was moving on to the rest of my life, and being able to share that pride with the rest of the graduating class.

Coming home and enjoying being home, enjoying the feeling that I wasn't chained to the place, enjoying some newfound freedom that came with growing up.

COVID-19 has stolen lives; I consider myself so lucky it has not taken any of the people I care for. But it has touched and soured other parts of my life; it has swept away special experiences that may never be had again.

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