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I remember thinking how amazing my last year of high school was going to be. The first day, my  friend and I drove into the parking lot to our favorite song of the summer, “Ride It” by Regard, without a care in the world. It was finally our time and our year. If only we knew what was going to happen, I would’ve absorbed every last minute leading up to March.  

There we were, March 13; my last real day of high school, of my senior year. It’s amusing to look back on it now since we really thought that we’d be coming back. My teachers and the school  faculty, even the governor, would keep giving us false hope– “we’ll come back in April,” then it  was “we’ll definitely be returning in May,” and then finally it was, “unfortunately, we need to make the remainder of the school year remote.”  

I didn’t even know how to feel. No more prom, no more prom weekend at Seaside, no  graduation, no after-graduation retreat, no white-water rafting, no senior prank day. We didn’t get any of those “last year of high school” events. Oh, and then we had to wait to find out if our colleges were planning on having us come to campus; who knew at this point, and I didn’t have  much hope. 

I was heartbroken, angry, and I continued to ask “why?” I couldn’t spend the end of my year with not only my friends, but the teachers I grew close with, my guidance counselor who I adored, and even the other faces I would see walking from class to class. But, eventually, I came to the realization that maybe, in a way, I needed this. 

I worked four to five days a week after school and sometimes on the weekend. I’d wake up at 5:30am, go work out, shower there, go to school and after school go straight to work. This would happen almost every day during the week. For some reason, I didn’t notice how much this was  taking a toll on my everyday life. So, when that all stopped, I didn’t know what to do with  myself. 

I needed it. I needed to take a mental, physical and emotional break. I didn’t realize that all of this was exactly what I’ve been craving. I took it day by day, drove around, played my guitar and sang more, I spent so much time with my family– which at times was too much– but in the end,  it was more than I could ever ask for. Also, I ended up having a real graduation, in July, but at  least we got the closure we all needed. I reflected recently on all of these events that have  happened, well, some that didn’t happen, and I looked at it in a more positive light. 

The point I’m trying to get across to whoever may read this is that things felt like they weren’t  going to get better, but surprise, it did. Yes, everyone always says that “everything happens for a reason,” but I’ve never believed in something more. I’m in college, with the exception that we  are still in a pandemic. Although it’s not the way we wanted to enter our freshman year, it’s  something– something to be grateful for.

Hi guys, My name is Katie Murphy, I'm a freshman here at Pace NYC majoring in Arts and Entertainment Management. I am excited to have joined the HerCampus chapter at my university since I am all about women empowerment and I'm excited to write some fun articles about music, pop culture, health and more stuff. So excited for this journey :))
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