As I write this piece, my mind is already bubbling up with mixed emotions. It’s like adding everything in a stew at once where, in the end, it turns out to be a huge mess. I’m feeling sad and angry at the same time, and I feel helpless about it. I’m so goggled with frustration that I can’t do a single thing on my own.
I haven’t seen any of my friends for over a year since this pandemic began. And even with video calling, I feel so annoyed that I can’t interact with them face-to-face. Every time I have nothing to do, I end up reflecting on my past. After watching Alma Matters on Netflix, my nostalgia has hit me as if I’m having a brain freeze.
I never forgot the days when my friends and I used to chill out and do ‘bakchodi‘ either on the college campus or in the hostel. At least you’ll cherish the times you had with your friends before college ends. It’s a bummer that the pandemic has taken that away from many of us. But I got used to it anyway.
When I returned home in March 2020, things went from bad to worse. First, there was the lockdown. I tried to divert my mind by doing random things such as playing video games, drawing something, writing articles for competitions, and making memes and videos. But often, I would feel myself getting saturated even with my hobbies. At one point, it became too tedious to do anything. Maybe it was because I wanted to deny the reality of the situation.
I have barely left the house during the pandemic, except in March of this year when I started going out for walks because I was getting overweight. I even started an internship under my cousin. It was when the cases were declining. There was some ray of hope left. I thought I might return to college and enjoy my time with my friends.
If not that, at least I could bring back the rest of my things from the hostel that were still lying there. Just when I thought everything was going back to normal, the second wave happened. Just like that, all hopes went burr… Sadly, I didn’t get the chance to get my stuff back from my hostel. It’s been lying there for a year and a half now.
It’s hard to watch the mess that was the second wave. We all know what happened — the government’s incompetence, people’s ignorance and declining medical supply. It’s hard to put it into words about what was happening then. I’ll be doing a huge injustice to the victims of this dreaded pandemic.
And then there are the upper echelons of colleges. They dare to demand high fees from parents who lost their jobs because of the lockdown or were forced to shut down their businesses. The fees wasn’t the only problem — there was a toxic number of online classes, examinations and assignments. Sometimes, I feel I’d rather do nothing than waste my time on the fruitless abyss of the toxic online education system.
I never found the ‘luxury’ to even go through a depressive phase ever since my father passed away. I tried to move on despite all the bullying in school and my declining grades. But that doesn’t mean I don’t feel it at all. When I have those feelings, it hurts badly. It makes me think that life is ultimately meaningless. All these years of being strong on the inside do take a toll on me and my mind.
Regardless, as much as I’m sick of this pandemic, it’ll only make my resolve even stronger. Skull Face, from Metal Gear Solid V, once said, “All that’s left is the future.” That’s what I’m gonna do. I’ll try to keep moving forward for my sake and my family’s sake. No matter what, I will see this through when my family’s financial troubles end. And when this pandemic remains in the pages of history, I will never remember it. At the same time, I will not hope that something like this ever happens again.