Hello again world.
It has been a bit since I have given a formal update in my all of my own words about what is happening and how things are going. Sometimes I feel like people forget that I am still in grad school and putting up with all it has to offer (aka the million projects and test I have after returning from Spring Break). But have no fear, I am back for a quick second to do just that.
If I have not expressed it enough already, I appreciate everyone who has reached out in the last 2 months about my situation. All of the kind words, prayers, and love sent on all devices have been welcomed and will continue to be. Also all the kind words from the news interviews, articles, and radio shows I have been on… there is so much to be grateful for in these times.
However, I have said from the beginning of this blog before I moved here, I would be honest with those who read it. I do not plan on changing that at all. Everything I have said has been from my own perspective and own life experiences. Most of all they have been true. Before you continue reading you should know that this might rub you the wrong way. Some people may even get offended and for that I am sorry. But like I said, it’s my story, my thoughts, and my truth.
With that being said, I am so extremely tired of answering the questions: “how come you have not come back to the United States yet?” or my favorite statement said to me more than once everyday “any word on when the lockdown will be over? They are talking about lifting our restrictions here soon.”
Think about what you are saying to someone who has been in basic solitary confinement for two whole months at this point.
I look on social media daily and see people out doing whatever they want as if nothing is wrong In the world. I look and see people getting their take out food or Starbucks iced coffee, then returning home to sit on their docks or in the open outdoors. I see people still going to parks and playgrounds to “get some exercise” and socialize with people but “from a distance”.
Do you know what I have done in the last 60 days of the quarantine and national lockdown? I have sat in a window sill to try to tan my legs and “experience the outdoors”. I look at a computer screen for 8 hours a day if not more doing school work then watching Netflix to get my mind off things. I run to the grocery store and try to time myself to only be outside for less the 30 minutes. I was risky only one day to go to the post office to get a package sent from my mom with things that I needed in it.
When someone tells me “they are tired of the quarantine” and “want their life to go back”… but I see them waiting in the drive through of Starbucks and documenting it on SnapChat I have absolutely no sympathy.
The United States is lucky if you ask me. You still have “essential businesses” open and can still go get take out from most of your favorite restaurants. You can get in your car and drive around when you’re bored. Or like my dad go get an ice cream from Dairy Queen when you are craving it.
The life in Italy is jail time or fined a lot of money if you are outside without a mask on. You stand in line for 30+ minutes waiting to go into a grocery store and have a limited time to get in and get out. You can’t walk outside of 200 meters from your house without getting punished. And you sure as hell can not go up to the local Mexican restaurant to get take out soft tacos with guac on the side.
So then next time you brag about “your restrictions being lifted” or want to send a message to someone in the kind of confinement and quarantine like the people of Italy… think twice. It really does not help our spirits. Especially if we believe it is the wrong thing to do. Watching this mayhem unfold from afar has been the most heart breaking thing I have had to endure so far. I witnessed it first hand, and then had to watch it again on social media and through my family back home. So I am not the one to argue with on trying to open the country back up.
To answer the question “why have you not decided to return to the States?” My answer has been and will continue to be the same. I am here for school. School is the reason I picked up, moved myself and 7 suitcases filled of most of my belongings and life to Milan, Italy. I am a very goal oriented person. If you don’t believe me, ask my dad. Once I set my mind to something it is hard to shake it out of my head. I knew from exactly a year ago today (April 24) that I was about to do something crazy with my life. So here I am, still doing something crazy. School has been tough. I have cried a lot. I have missed my family, friends, social interaction, meals not cooked by me, and iced coffee more than you know. But I am here for a purpose and that purpose hasn’t changed.
This post isn’t to be mean, or to yell at those people always messaging me about it. I will respond to you if you do message me… and I promise I will be kind. I just want some people to think before they do send me a message bragging about their situation when I haven’t been able to have the freedom or nearly the amount of loose restrictions that the USA has. So I am just speaking my truth and my thoughts.
Thank you for listening to this if you made it here to the end… and again I am sorry if you do not agree with me or take offense to my words. I have nothing but love for all the people who have supported me, I just am tired of the same things, over and over.