Written by Sulega Cali, BAME Ambassador.
It is crazy to see how much has changed over the year or perhaps how little has changed. Although we have welcomed a new year, it feels as though we are still trapped in 2020, still trapped in the same cycle, same rules, same reactions. The fear that we are not going to see the end to these so called ‘unprecedented times’, the fear that we will lose our youth, the overall undeniable fear that we might lose more than just ourselves but someone we love. With the morality rate continuing to climb, the lines between death and reality are continuing to blur. Before it seemed, to a lot of us death was like a dream, not so close, but as every day continues it pierces are reality, threatening to knock on our doors.
With no end in sight, so many of us are scared to think if this will end and if it does, how much will we have lost? With nothing to look forward to, this lockdown in particular has elevated everyone’s reality and alongside it, their anxiety. There is an overwhelming feeling of panic, this feeling that we are trapped. A lack of guidance from the government, a heavy ownership and punishment placed on to the public. A feeling that our lives are just numbers and none of us matter. Is this a nightmare? Every now and then we ask ourselves, surely, this cannot be what we are indeed experiencing.
As this goes on a lot of students have another battle to face in the form of a degree that is so colourfully dressed in a nine thousand two-hundred-and-fifty-pound dress that we paid for. University has always been hard but currently it feels impossible. A heavy burden. An impossible task. With our grasp on reality slowly loosening. With so many of us slowly falling victim to our doubts, our thoughts, our sadness – how can we manage our coursework? Our exams? While we watch others somehow manage to do well, keep their wits about them and be excellent, many of us are drowning and our will to save ourselves is perishing.
But there is hope. Not just because there has to be, because there always is. There is hope in humanity because as so many of us are trapped in our houses, the idea that our worth is tied to useless and materialistic things is finally diminishing. People are craving for community; they are appreciating the meaning of it. They are seeing the reality of life and how we can better ourselves as a society. There is hope that when we emerge from the ashes of these so-called unprecedented times, we will be new. We will be more caring, softer, kinder. We will have elevated. Honouring those we lost by creating a society that we don’t just survive in but that we can finally thrive in.