Our world centers around making connections. It’s normal to live every day surrounded by friends, by peers, by acquaintances who we learn from, and change because of. It is human nature to yearn to be surrounded by like-minded people, and conversation is something that so many take advantage of.
We are living in a new world now. It’s harder to make connections, and it’s harder to have conversations when separation is at the forefront of our minds. It’s a universal experience, despite how isolating the feeling may be. Learning to exist in this new world is one of the hardest things any of us have had to do. Figuring out how to live with everything we looked forward to a distant memory, grappling with the unfairness of the situation — quarantine seems suffocating.
It is in times like these, however, that we must pay attention to the smaller things that make isolation easier. We have technology; what once was seen as a burden and danger has become the only way to truly communicate with each other, and for that, we must be thankful. We have a community within our school that is unwavering, despite the separation.
Our seniors are missing their graduation, the event that they have worked tirelessly for. Our juniors are missing their first Prom. Our sophomores are missing class with some of the best teachers at our school. Our freshmen are missing their first year of high school. We have all suffered losses in the past few months, and it is integral for the community to remain strong despite all we missed out on.
We must continue to make these connections, to speak with each other, to see each other’s faces, even if they are behind the screen. And, most importantly, we must honor the class of 2020, who may not have been celebrated in person yet, but who should be celebrated for the incredible work they have done.
It’s no simple feat to graduate high school, and for that, we are proud of you all.
We don’t know when our world is going to go back to the way it was before, or if it will ever truly be the same. In all honesty, we probably will be dealing with the repercussions of these past few months forever.
That is why we must learn how to adapt, how to make connections even if all the odds are stacked against us. Being strong, supporting those who succeed, celebrating those who have worked tirelessly, that is what makes us a community, and in these times, we need our community — now, more than ever.