I don’t think it’s a secret to anyone that I haven’t been having a good time. Things are weird and hard in your 20s, and especially right now. I have spent a lot of time feeling far away from everyone else, and that’s hard for someone like me who values community so deeply.
But. We’ve been in lockdown for (almost?) 6 weeks now and I feel less alone than I have in years.
Having our world suddenly shut down has hurt a lot of people – myself included – and although I 100% agree with how necessary it is, I don’t think it’s a good thing. However, I have experienced a lot of good because of it. I have reconnected with old friends – people I haven’t really spoken to since early university, or before, and we’ve been able to pick up where we left off. Despite years of silence it’s gone right back to comfortable and vulnerable and loving like no time has passed. I’ve gotten to know new friends better, deeper, and it suddenly it feels like I’ve known them for years instead of months.
It’s easier to connect deeply with someone when you’re experiencing the same trauma. And that’s what this whole thing is: trauma. “A deeply distressing or disturbing experience.” We’re suddenly all on equal footing. We all woke up one day and at the same time realized, “all is not well,” and we’re learning how to get through it together. There are a million ways to process what’s going on in the world and besides flat-out denial and protesting over haircuts, I don’t think there’s a wrong way. I’m really grateful, though, that so many people in my circle are allowing this to turn into an opportunity to be open and to allow connection to happen.
What’s left, when everything is taken away, is everyone. Your family, birth or chosen. Or your friends. Or the people that you follow on Instagram. Or the people you’ve never met in real life but got added to their group chat and now you talk every day and have weekly game night with. I hope that you have those people. I hope that you’re finding community, wherever you are.
I hope that after all of this – and there will be an after – we can look back proud at how we cared for each other and showed up for each other, even from 6 feet apart.