Your 2020 self doesn’t really have her life together. Her phone still automatically plays the U2 album that she’s been too lazy to delete for six years. She still has acne that …
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Your 2020 self doesn’t really have her life together. Her phone still automatically plays the U2 album that she’s been too lazy to delete for six years. She still has acne that was supposed to go away after high school. She recently burned popcorn at the office. Despite all of these occurrences, she knows more than you do at this moment.
Here’s the thing: In 2020, you won’t be leaving your home for a few months. Do not worry — you didn’t do anything wrong. In fact, most places will be closed for a few months in 2020. It’s not quite like the supposed 2011 Rapture or the 2012 phenomenon, but life as you know it will change.
In March, you will spend a huge chunk of your day in video calls, and you’ll anxiously check whether or not you’re on mute. You will exclaim in surprise when you find a dress in your laundry load of t-shirts and sweatpants. You will buy a coloring book and unironically gush about subscription boxes.
In April, you can’t hug your family; instead, you’ll have a clandestine toilet paper trade-off in an empty parking lot. You’ll praise the mini bottles of hand sanitizer that you collected at a college event. In May, you will write down all of the things that you want to accomplish while staying at home. You will then misplace this list a few weeks later and return to the coloring book.
Over the summer, you will try to collect unique and ironic face masks to wear, but finally settle for a practical one and try not to drop it on the floor. In September, you will dye your hair purple and participate in an online meeting about how to run an online meeting.
In October, you will participate in an online video game tournament and then realize that your opponents are getting paid to vanquish you. In November, you will wonder where the rest of the year went, unsubscribe from political campaign emails and dye your hair purple again. In December, your parents will admonish you for not writing more “funny” columns, and Spotify will share your top genres: 1990s angst and showtunes.
If this is the closest you get to a quarter life crisis, you should take it. The effects of 2020 are not going away any time soon, and you should be incredibly grateful that you are only indirectly affected by COVID-19. It may not be exactly what you pictured, and that’s OK. We’re all living in this weird environment together, and we can share our experiences to feel less alone.
Sincerely, your much wiser 2020 self.
Rachel Horowitz resides in Chatham County and works in Pittsboro. She is a graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill’s Hussman School of Journalism and Media and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.