I find myself looking at nothing more often, my mind running over and over again, scenarios of what could have been before the whole coronavirus thing hit, and I can’t shake away the somber, emptiness inside of me.
Every day is the same. I wake up early, get ready for class, sit and stare at the computer, work on homework, go to work, come home and try to remember what day tomorrow is so I can be ready again. Never forgetting to sigh a few times a day because it’s grown so tiring and bleak.
I’m not trying to complain, but I’m trying my best to cope with the uncertainty of tomorrow and forgotten plans. A few months ago, I worried about where I should apply for jobs, where I would like to live and how I was going to celebrate my graduation. As a first-generation Mexican-American, this had been one of my longest-lasting dreams.
Now, all I hope is to get through the next Zoom class and wait by the mailbox for when my diploma arrives. I think about how hard it will be to find a job in my field. I mean, the market was already competitive, but with recent layoffs, high unemployment and with all the things orbiting around COVID-19, I just hoped for peace of mind.
“No group of young adults in modern history has graduated into a new reality so characterized by unknowns as the class of 2020,” according to an article recently published by The Wall Street Journal.
After reading the article, the thought dawned on me that this new recession would leak into the rest of my life and to all the other college students graduating this year. I sighed again as I read about our strained situation. I thought it couldn’t get worse.
It could though. Murder hornets made the news too and a longer list of the coronavirus symptoms and illness emerged. More unemployment, more virus cases. Just bad news after bad news. Although I knew things were OK in my life right now, the list of random events made me uncomfortable.
I recently came across a talk — that came to me quite timely — a BYU devotional given by Dallan R. Moody called, “What Happens When Life Gets One Degree Colder?“
“In those times of trial, despair, fear, and worry, the stage is best set for God to show forth His power,” Moody said. “Indeed, it is often in the most dire of circumstances that God’s arm is revealed most miraculously.”
It could be worse; it could be one degree colder. I sighed once again because the emptiness was filled. I felt grateful I could take such a deep breath. I felt grateful that I was healthy. I felt grateful that I still had a job. I sighed because I wanted to take it all in. All the fear and anxiety, but also all the hope and faith, that I need to keep moving forward.
It was nice to take a deep breath and stand tall against the odds of tomorrow. We live in a new world for sure and like me, I am sure there are many others longing for the things that could have been and worrying about what the next day will bring.
Every day is the same. For the next few months, I will still wake up early for class and stare at my computer. I will do homework and go to work. I will still struggle remembering what day is next and will keep sighing, knowing that even on bleak days, more promising tomorrows await.