Post 9: Is it weird to feel anxious about ‘going back to normal’?

A response to “Hey! I’m Sam” and “3 Ways to Live Happier From a Virtual Student”

First of all, hi Samuel Adams! I’ve really enjoyed reading your last few posts, ESPECIALLY “Hey! I’m Sam” and “3 Ways to Live Happier From a Virtual Student”. I don’t know if it was purposeful, but these two posts work really well together to illustrate life during this pandemic. I’m surprised more people don’t write about this, so I wanted to commend you on bringing awareness to being a “virtual college student”. Your perspective and positive content were really original, making your posts fun to read and very engaging.

In fact, your posts prompted me to reflect on my own experience as a virtual college student, and I think it’s so crazy how much we have had to adjust and rework our lives because of the pandemic. As first-year college students, this adjustment has been even more dramatic. We went into this pandemic as high school students (basically kids), but we’re leaving as young adults. As you share Sam, we’ve had to figure out to be independent under really restrictive circumstances, and this hasn’t always been easy.

After 13 months, I felt like I was just getting into the swing of things: I’ve been doing well in my classes, I’ve started to become involved in the school community, and I even make time to (virtually) socialize with my friends. But as everyone I know is thankfully getting their vaccines, I realize things are about to change… AGAIN.

My mindset right now is summarized in this quote from Vogue writer Elena Sheppard:

Here’s the link to Sheppard’s article:

In the past month, “reopening anxiety” has worked its way into the news’ daily vernacular. It’s used to describe these feelings of uncertain change. As soon as I heard the term, I thought, why should we feel weird for going back to normal?

Well, why SHOULDN’T we feel weird. As virtual college students, we’ve created a new normal in the past year. For many of us, the only way we even know how to be in college is through Zoom. Reopening doesn’t mean “going back to normal”, it means adjusting to a completely new environment. If you’re feeling like me, this is a reminder you’re not alone.

Thanks, Sam, for allowing me to reflect and gain some clarity on this situation!