Quarantine Things

The wild, the weird, the unknown, the uncertain — the world. These past few weeks have been a lot. Being forced under a mask of quarantine has made me hyper-aware of who I am and what I stand for. I sit in seconds of introspection, forced to evaluate myself as a person — and sometimes I am disappointed. I try so hard to be good. To be a person who others look up to. To be a person who makes herself proud. To be a daughter who exemplifies empathy. To be a sister who brings joy. To be a friend who provides comfort.

Sitting in this quarantine, however, has made me question if I am following these character traits that I so desperately desire. I am not perfect, but sitting in this secluded trance, I have found a disconnect in who I am and who I want to be.

I keep reminding myself, however, that I am trying. I am trying to become a better person.

The quest for comparison is easy to fall into, and so this year, I have been trying to be intentional in the way I live my life. I want to be me. In order to escape the comparison, I did something quite dramatic for the 21st-century twenty-year-old — I went underground. I deleted my Facebook account and rarely check Instagram. This disconnection from the world has been weird. I live in this hole. I can’t even interact with people other than my family because of this quarantine, and now I don’t even know what’s happening in other people’s lives.

Though, why should I even care to know? I mean, I continue to call and text those who matter most — so does it really matter that I don’t know what’s happening in the lives of my digital friends?

I’ve been thinking a lot about friendships as well — and, honestly, I sit at a crossroads. I’ve always been this bubbly-positive-loud person. People identify me with those qualities, and as a result, people sometimes take advantage of my naive nature. I’m not clueless, but I appear to be. I give everyone an optimistic cheer and truly invest myself in those I am around.

This has led me to be friends with everyone, even those who have a cold character. I’ve realized that I can remain civil with people, but not be best friends with those people — that’s hard though. I’ve never consciously distanced myself from people, and now I am realizing, I should. I should be nice to everyone, but purely invest myself into people I truly want around me.

These quarantine reflections have been difficult. They’ve been difficult because they highlight parts of myself I want to improve — and when you must improve, it also means you’re not where you believe you should be.

To be completely honest, I’ve never been fully satisfied with who I am. It’s not because I feel like other people are better — I just feel like I have so much unlocked potential, and I’m scared of not reaching that.

As I get older, as my college experience is coming to end, as I decide who I want in my future, I am realizing that the next couple of years will define my impact, they’ll define my potential push. It scares me because though I know I am equipped with knowledge and opportunities to do a lot — sometimes I wish to simply live my life. Be a simple person in the world. Be someone who spends the week working and the weekends exploring. Then, however, this burst of anger fires within me. Why should I dare to live a simple life? I have been fortunate to have so many opportunities — shouldn’t I have a stronger vision? Shouldn’t I desire to be a CEO, the next president, or a multi-million dollar entrepreneur?

The simple life is stale, right?

I guess this existential crisis has grown from this opportunity to reflect. I spend my days attending class lectures online, at night I study for an exam, and when I’m done I have moments just to think. I get lost in my thoughts — and sometimes they thrill me and other times they terrify me.

I am proud of myself. I am. I have excelled academically in college. I have an incredible summer internship. I have lived abroad. I attend a highly-ranked public university. I have been able to obtain leadership roles. I have friends and family who support me.

And though I recognize these blessings and opportunities, I still feel inadequate.

Maybe it’s low self-esteem or the quarantine quarrel in my mind, but as I sit here on a Sunday night I feel disoriented. I fear what will happen next. I fear that I won’t make myself proud.

3 thoughts on “Quarantine Things

  1. Dear Hira, Your emotionally charged narrative is amazing. Know that feeling to be incomplete and not enough are the signs that you are alive and awake. Those who feel that they are complete have reached the end of road and they have nothing left to look forward to. Trying is all that we can do and continue doing. Learn to enjoy the journey and do not be hasty to reach the destination, you will always be happy. Love, Nana


    1. You are very right! Life is a journey with twists, turns, bumps, and detours. I need to embrace them! Thank you for your encouraging comment. Love you, Nana! ❤


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