The New Normal

As the school year came to its end and the COVID-19 Pandemic continued to ramp up, Ryplie Shea Hillman wrote this essay on her experience as a Grade 9 student - a teenager in a small community, trying to cope with the dramatic changes this virus has instituted. Thank you, Ryplie for sharing this with us and our readers.

Stuck at a place of mine where suddenly the world starts to lose touch with reality. I find myself questioning, “Is this really happening?”

When my mind wonders for so long in a state with no distractions in the light of the moon my mind goes blank. I lose my sense of caution and anything feels possible; which scares me to be honest. It’s almost like me being trapped in the danger of my own room makes me do more risk full and hateful things. Being bored is a dangerous path in a teenager’s mind; we can change a lot. Lose themselves under the layer of boredom and constant vibrations only burying the real problem deeper in the rapids of thoughts and dreams.

The days lose their length and the nights only go further into sleep deprivation while the parents don’t notice their own child anymore and the favourite conversation that lingers in the atmosphere of our once home now kingdom of resentment is, “Are you ok? You seem different.”

We can’t answer that question because we don’t know it ourselves. Our friends start to drift away to the capturing screen of our only mirror to the outside world. People used to say, “Stay off your screens; the world is outside.”

That’s not true anymore. Our phones lose their once purpose of a friendly past time to committed lifestyle. As teachers wrap us into the never ending story of due dates and paper the stress and anger deepens further into the warm layers of our sweat-pant covered skin. The desire to just put everything to the next day and just sink into the coffin of our own beds becomes more tempting each “Groundhog Day.”

Setting goals and activities to the days to come only guides us into a more submerging hate for ourselves and for the people that try to help.

The constant comparison to going for a run or to losing yourselves and a brain drilling night with her friends makes moving less and less appealing. With each day all the music of our memories of a normal life echoes through each chapter our brain makes us gain the teaspoon of hope.