The short film this is what it feels like to be a teenager in 2020, directed and produced by Rya Partible, asked the question, “what it feels like to be a teenager in 2020” to 100 students and compiled the responses into the short film. 2020 is a dark and uncertain time, with the numerous war and conflicts around the world and the introduction to a year-long pandemic. For me, being a teen in 2020 is uncertain and challenging at best.
My 2020 started full of uncertainty. Coming into high school, I was prepared to ace every test, befriend everyone, and have an awkward conversation with my crush and not talk to her for the rest of the 4 years. This all ended with the pandemic. I did not have a complete high school experience and was uncertain about what I might do. I tried out many potential career paths, but none worked out. I lost the spark and joy in life. For a while, I was a living husk. I woke up, went online, closed zoom to finish homework, then went to bed. There was no interaction with others. I was locked behind a screen. My friends seem so close on the screen, but I can never reach them. I was also locked at home. The lockdown proved to be difficult for most if not all. I was lost and alone. I think I relate with many of the students, but the student I most relate to is the girl with the word “uncertain.” I didn’t choose her just because her word choice is similar to mine. We can interpret a word differently, especially in such a creative space. I relate to her because this is arguably the most important time of our life, but what are we doing? We are stuck behind screens studying; we are watching the world burn; we are watching the countries fight; we are witnessing the destruction of humanity. This being said, there is still hope. I walked out of the shadow into the bright future. If I can, so can you, and so can this world.