This has been the shortest never-ending year of my high school career. It feels like it was only a few weeks ago that we were looking ahead at this daunting school year filled with questions and seemingly no answers. It doesn’t feel like long ago that classmates were being quarantined left and right, or when we sat in class not knowing which day would be the last before school shut down again. And yet, I can almost vividly remember every day of this year, although it all blurs together in the end, because I think I’ve learned that each day that we are alive, healthy, and surrounded by our friends is one worth remembering.
The pandemic that we have all survived will forever be ingrained in all of our memories I’m sure, and it’s crazy to think that our children and grand-children will read about this time period, and all of us will be able to say, “I survived that. I lived through it. We all did.” Because despite all that has happened and all that will happen, that is the truth. We have survived. A year ago, I don’t think that any of us could have imagined what would unfold in the following months. A few months ago, I don’t think that we could have imagined restrictions being lifted and projections for a ‘normal’ life on the horizon. I think that the most important thing that any of us could have learned from this experience is that we can’t know what is going to happen today, tomorrow, or in a month. We can’t know what will happen, so all we can do is keep putting one foot in front of the other, living each day to the fullest with no regrets. We have all come to know the value of not just being alive, but actually living our lives. And I hope we will not forget it for a long time.
Being in Newspaper has given me the chance to not only learn these things, but be able to share that knowledge with other people. From writing news articles about Covid updates and mask mandates, to writing about the influential protests and revealing injustices in our world, to creating podcasts about our small corner of the world at Herriman, it has all been important so that we can keep moving forward. It would have been easy to get stuck in the chaos of the pandemic, so that we were the ones holding ourselves back. Thankfully we have all begun to join together in a fight for the world and life that we want. This year has been about learning and growing as a people. We learn so that we can fight for what is right and be educated in our beliefs. As teenagers, the pandemic may have changed our high school dream, but I think that it was a necessary change in order to shape us into individuals capable of bouncing back, of not giving up. I think that we have become better people for it.