I am a four-year rising senior at Kents Hill School in central Maine. When I was in sixth grade, my mom was diagnosed with stage four lung cancer, which correlates to this pandemic because the people who are most greatly affected by COVID-19 are older people and people with underlying medical conditions. Lung cancer is currently one of the more severe health conditions to have during this pandemic, especially considering how the coronavirus’s symptoms are affecting people's respiratory systems.
We all have to be extremely cautious, and truly take quarantine seriously. For my family, the pandemic has been really difficult to deal with, and it has changed our lifestyle a lot. In the past, we were used to being careful to protect my mom, but this has just made everything a little bit scarier. Even though this pandemic isn’t necessarily settling down, people are starting to loosen their reigns, which is really unfortunate because this isn’t over yet. It’s especially hard for my family, as we still have to be super careful for her. The thought of spreading the coronavirus to my mom is just really terrifying.
This pandemic has taken an emotional toll on me— on top of worrying for my mom, I also worry for the rest of my family because my dad has underlying health conditions and I live with my grandparents. I always have to take that extra step to be the most cautious I can possibly be.
In the winter, my mom got really sick and we almost lost her. At the time, I was at school and I just felt so helpless. The thought of something like that happening again just can’t be put into words. I have so many thoughts constantly racing in my head like, “What if my mom gets the virus?”. So, because of all of that, the first few months of the pandemic were some of the most stressful times of my life.
I hope my senior year is something special, despite being different. I hope everyone takes a lot of consideration into how this may affect the class of 2021, because we’re finishing out our final year in the midst of this pandemic. We’re still in the thick of it, but I hope we can still make this year one of a kind— I want it to be something that we will never forget rather than something that we will want to forget.
I also want the people in my life to know that even when I am going through hard times and I might not always seem emotionally available, I will always be there for other people. We are all currently going through different situations, but we are all fighting the battle against COVID-19 together, so we can all relate to this aspect of each other’s lives.
Written by: Siobhan Kelley