Tag is exactly snow
2021-12-28COVID-19 gave us a tough time, and many of us haven’t had a chance to stop and check in with ourselves about what has actually been happening around us. Coming to New York was a new beginning for me that came with additional responsibilities. I had to balance my personal and academic life, family’s financial needs, extracurricular activities, and work. Just when I felt that everything was going smoothly, I was shattered to hear that it had been three months since my I-20 was terminated because of an academic document transfer issue. I could not go back to my country as I was part of “Hizmet,” a faith-inspired civil society movement, which at that time was facing oppression and persecution due to the bogus allegations of orchestrating a failed coup in Turkey. Therefore, I had to apply for asylum, which caused me a lot of stress, and it affected my academic career as I had to focus on court procedures. Even though due to the pandemic, the scheduled hearings got canceled, prolonging this challenging period, and I lost my job which was the only source for me to pay for my college tuition and support my family, still I tried to engage rather than focus on the negative side of the situation and depress myself. I put all of my efforts into being academically productive and doing something one day I could be proud of by boosting my academic performance leading me get several scholarships, involving myself in research programs, and focusing on advocacy as a student leader. As the responsibilities got heavier and more stressful, I just kept telling myself: "The harder the battle, the sweeter the victory." Life goes on... This funny story comes to my mind when the topic is about COVID-19. This past winter, the weather got really cold and snowy, and the lake behind a rental Pocono house froze over. With all the snow around us, we inevitably enjoyed a good-old fashioned snowball fight where the snowballs were called the "COVID-19" infected snowballs. Once you get hit, you get the virus. However, we soon found ourselves chasing one of our friends on top of the lake due to the ferocity he threw the snowballs with. One by one, we raced our way towards the middle of the lake. It may be obvious what happened next, but it took us all by surprise at the moment. The ice that once was had cracked, and I found my body submerged in the ice-cold water. As I tried to make myself back to solid ground, the image of my other friends frantically trying to stay calm caught my attention. When we finally did make it to safety, I couldn’t help but laugh at the events that just transpired.
2020-04-15The winter seemed to go on forever