How 2020 Has Changed Us

Allie Rial

2020 has been a monumental year, and to close it out we wanted to take a moment to acknowledge how it has changed us.

Travis C – 2020 has changed me in many unexpected ways. During this year I was able to find more ways to hangout with my friends even with seeing one another. I was able to experiment with things I’ve wanted to try and I was able to do that because I had the time. I found ways to see my family and get to talk with them. I learned how to be diligent with my time and use it well even without the guidance of school. Overall I’d say I’ve learned a lot of new things throughout this year that has made me a better person. 

Anonymous- I am more resilient, a better problem solver, have gained more patience and flexibility, and have learned not to take anything for granted.

Allie- While 2020 threw a lot at me, I think I was able to better myself because of it. I learned how important it is to appreciate and not overlook the little things because they gave me a lot of joy while being stuck at home whether it was playing a board game with my siblings, taking a walk outside, or looking through old photos. I also found new ways to interact with my friends and family and realized how much those interactions mean to me. I got more organized and used creative problem solving a lot this year and I think that will benefit me in the future. Hopefully, 2021 brings us not only back to normal, but a year that we keep in mind all the things we’ve learned.

Anonymous- I completed everything I needed to do before student teaching.  I really feel like I have accomplished a lot to get here.

Katie- When the world shut down on March 13, I remember sitting in the silent cafeteria with my friends wondering what would happen next. As each month dragged on, everything changed for me: my summer trip to Europe was cancelled, the MLB season kept getting delayed, and I couldn’t visit any of my family or friends. Looking back, however, I now realize that 2020 was not that bad because it gave me time. This past year, I have gotten to reconnect with my younger siblings. Since we usually are all busy with sports, activities, and different schools, it is rare for us to be in the same room with each other. So, even though 2020 took a lot away, it also allowed me the time to reconnect with my sister and brother. Because of that, I’ll forever have memories of us playing baseball, MarioKart tournaments, and swimming in waves twice our size. So, in a weird way, thanks 2020.

Anonymous- 2020 has made me so much more socially aware, grateful, and constantly self-improving. If it weren’t for this year, I don’t think I would be as educated and supportive of the progress that society is making, and how much further we have to go. I’ve become much more empathetic and compassionate for others, but I have also been learning to speak up for myself.

Sebastian- 2020 has been a year of immense difficulties, so any sort of accomplishment is seen as a great success. This year has felt like nothing truly amazing has happened, yet the fact that small things like hanging out with a sibling can still happen cannot be taken for granted. I have had many disagreements with my brother over the years, as any siblings will. However, at the end of the day, I have learned to be able to not take that for granted and to start to form a better relationship with him as a brother. Overall, it isn’t perfect, as we still have the occasional spat. Despite that, I can take solace in the fact that we have the ability to move on and continue as siblings. Being at home all of the time makes having that sort of ability absolutely critical, and it has made this time a little bit easier.

Anonymous- It has changed me by helping me speak up more when I need help and to explore more hobbies instead of just staying on my phone.

Jack – In March of 2020, the world stopped. When it did stop, everyone was panicking – why were we stopping? How long will this last? How will I be affected? These questions were among the most frequently asked. However, there is now a light at the end of the tunnel as Pfizer, a pharmaceutical company, has begun to roll out a vaccine that is over 95% effective at building immunity to COVID-19. As this unusual period has begun to end, I’ve started to reflect on how this quarantine has affected me.

When the isolation first began, I felt very lost, as I was beginning to lose my senior year of high school, one of the most coveted experiences  of high school. I felt these feelings for the longest time until one day I woke up and had a realization that I’m very fortunate to have the life that I do. I began to think about all the people and the resources that I have to lead a fulfilling life. However, as I had this realization, I sequentially realized all the people that are not as fortunate as I am, and that there are many who are struggling at the hands of this pandemic. This experience made me much more alert to the well being of others. As a result of this, I felt motivated to do better, I began to lead a much more routine lifestyle that consisted of working out early, getting school work in quicker, and getting to bed earlier than in the past. I recognized that I was able to do all this because I never had to leave the house, I was focused! 

Covid taught me the power of finding a structured routine, and I plan on using it in the future!

Anonymous- 2020 has been challenging, but it has allowed me to reach my full potential physically, mentally, and emotionally. Although we have been distanced this year, I have learned to push harder in my academics by asking for help when needed and finding a study method that works for me. Quarantine showed me who my true friends are, and who truly supports me and who does not. I have also learned that it takes effort to reach goals, but it is possible. I have learned to work for change while still accepting myself for who I am.

Ronen-  Covid taught me to be patient and to respect others’ personal life and safety. Everyone during this time has had to be patient and take their time to start to learn this brand new way of life, such as having to adapt to government regulations and the new ways of participating in school. Covid has not been easy on anyone and everyone has been trying their best to stay safe and to still be a part of their family and of society.

Anonymous- 2020 was a mix of extremely low moments and extremely high moments. I had a great year with friends. I reconnected with some old friends and got closer with some I already had, we just had a lot of fun this year. We just keep doing all we can to keep our senior year feel even the slightest bit normal. Emotionally it was hard and overall, I am a completely different person. I am more appreciative of the good moments and I don’t linger in the bad ones. I am becoming stronger and though this year wasn’t great, I have that to be thankful for.

Zoe- Over the long year of 2020 I have learned a lot about the world, fun things to do alone, but most importantly I have learned a lot about myself. I didn’t realize how simple life was until everything had changed. During the year I have understood that I have to appreciate the things in my life while I have them. While life was very different this year, I am very thankful for it because I feel like I was able to self reflect and target and eliminate any internal conflict that I may have had before quarantine started. I am super excited for a fresh new start, and I am going to try my best to make the most of the upcoming year of 2021.

Anonymous- I’ve become healthier – taking time for me and what my body needs.  I’ve become more accepting of change and more adaptable to just going with plan B or C or D… I’ve become more purposeful in my interactions with people by listening more, learning more, and reaching out more.

Sophia- This year has definitely forced me to look inward and encourage myself to grow. I have learned a lot about myself and who I am, more importantly that who I am does not have to and will not be the same as I continue to grow and learn. Teaching myself that it is okay to let go of things that hold you back and move on to new paths and journeys was a hugely influential lesson that this year taught me. I really started to care for myself and work on my own happiness., learning to be happy and alone.

Anonymous- This is my first year in high school. So I am still figuring out who I am. This year has changed me because I now feel comfortable with myself. I found out I love to workout and run. I figured out that I love my curly hair. I found me. Before 2020 I was trying to get by and fit in. Today I am trying to be the best person I can be. 

Anonymous- It has made me more empathetic and open to see the things going on around the world. I thought I was in such a bad position in quarantine and then I see around the world and realize how truly blessed I was and am.