Staying in Tucson while my whole world changes

By Kasey Adrian/El Inde

I would have never thought my last semester of college would end so quickly due to a pandemic. Since spring break ended, my life has changed drastically in a matter of days.

The first time I heard about Covid-19 was around early February: I remember watching the news and seeing a plane fly in from China that had American citizens who were affected by the virus. My first reaction was, “Why would they bring them back to America?” I had a gut feeling it would impact our country as it had with China. As days carried on, the virus became more of a conversation topic, but people weren’t cautious of it in any way.

Going into my last spring break I was eager to have the best time with my closest friends in Mexico. While we were there, we mostly disconnected ourselves from our cell phones and didn’t watch the news at all; we basically forgot that the coronavirus was affecting people daily.

Then, on my last day in Mexico, I received an email from the University of Arizona, saying that school would resume online until April. 6. My friends and I were ecstatic: We basically had gotten an extension of our spring break. Two days later, we received another email from the university saying that students shouldn’t return to campus and classes would be online for the rest of the semester.

At first, I wasn’t upset about the situation because all of my friends were still in town. As time went on, my friends started to trickle out of Tucson. More than half the people I know went home due to Covid-19. Now, Tucson feels like a ghost town.

Ever since school switched to being online, my days became less and less productive. I never thought school would be hard online, but it is extremely tough for me. I enjoy being productive in my day by going to class, sitting at a coffee shop to do homework and working out at the gym. I keep thinking this would be the perfect time for me to workout and blow off my stress.

At the beginning, there were days when I didn’t know what day it was, and I logged into my laptop stressed as ever, trying to finish all my assignments in one day. It’s always been difficult for me to finish my work at home, which is why I go to a different environment. There have been consecutive days where I lock myself in my room and look at my computer from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. to finish homework. I miss sitting in a classroom next to my peers with a coffee or tea, listening to my professors.

As this virus is changing my college life, another dramatic thing happened the day I returned from Mexico. I received a joined FaceTime call from my mom and brother while I was at my friend’s house in Phoenix. Right as I answered the phone call, my mom said “I need to speak with you both privately.” I then walked into a room by myself and heard my mom say “I filed for divorce from your father and we sold the house.”

I immediately hung up the call. I was extremely upset. I couldn’t stop wondering why she would tell me now. This was the worst time; she knew I was at my friend’s house, and not alone. That night was one of the longest nights I’ve had, I cried for hours, making phone call after phone call, trying to get answers.

I wasn’t completely shocked when she told my brother and I she filed for divorce because my parents haven’t been the same since late October 2019. Life was rough: my dad lost his job, my dog passed away and my brother got a DUI in a matter of a couple months. I did think things were going to get better once my dad got a new job that pays more than his last one, but I guess that didn’t make a difference. To this day, I haven’t spoken to my mom about her decision.

There will be days I’m an emotional wreck, trying to take in everything at once. I think about not having the graduation I’ve been waiting for since my freshman year, about leaving all of my best friends, going home to a whole different life with two separate houses and living without knowing what my future will bring.

There have been days when I’m not able to live in the moment. There were so many events me and my friends planned that aren’t happening anymore; if life was still normal I would be leaving today to have one of the best weekends of my life at Coachella. All I can think of is, when will I wake up from this terrible dream?

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