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A short review of the rollercoaster that was the year 2020
Lisa-Marie Lofty, The Mike Staff Writer
2020. Need I say more? The year that needs no introduction. It is almost shocking how there is so much power, meaning, and sentiment, in the chunk of numbers that seem to roll off the tongue ever so effortlessly. However, I believe most will agree that 2020 was anything but easy. The year felt similar to being on a rollercoaster that you are not well strapped into, that is slowly catching fire, where the only viable option is to cling on for dear life and let the ride take its course.
The past year moved in waves, washing over the world, exposing the depths of systemic racism, white supremacy, sexism, and class divides, among other pertinent issues, as society continued to poorly paddle through the pandemic. Even though we are in a new year, the issues of the last year did not self-destruct after the countdown at midnight. Rather they still remain ever-present and continue to be seen daily. However, as we continue with online learning, also known as “Zoom University,” and approach exam season (some may be there already), I think it is interesting and refreshing to remember some of the relatable moments experienced in online learning, as we hope for it to end by the fall.
In the span of online learning, motivation has been at an all-time low, while back pain and eye strains are at an all-time high. Let us not forget the panic around forgetting deadlines and Quercus quizzes, procrastination, and spending 15 minutes trying to find a Zoom link for a class you have been taking all semester. This does not even begin to scratch the surface of the difficulties of online learning. There are moments, like when a person accidentally exposes their embarrassing backgrounds and searches during their screen shares, when you forget to mute yourself in a meeting, the scrambling to look presentable when you suddenly need to turn on your camera, and when people’s pets and little children make appearances in online classes. These examples all signify that every person working or studying online is just going through the motions, navigating, and constantly adapting to the current normal that is ever-changing.
A final reminder: we are all more than the struggles we have faced in the past year. Remember that you are exactly where you need to be. In case you did not hear this today, you deserve to experience joy, you deserve to express who you are fully, you deserve to rest. Take care of your energy. You are here. You have survived today, and I am proud of you.