Hold on Pain Ends

Since an early age, hope was often associated with school. I was always hoping to reach the dinner queue first to get the best food, hoping to get the best grades with a minimal amount of studying, hoping to survive another gruelling Maths lesson unscathed, hoping to get a substitute teacher when I remembered the homework I had forgotten to complete. For me, hope was always connected to trivialities and when it came to more significant matters, apprehension would be more of a fitting word. So in our current circumstances, apprehension had come to be the overriding feeling that was reserved for the situation since hope only seemed to be restricted to circumstances that I could control.

Cancelled exams that seemed like a blessing to begin with ended with a little confusion and a lot of apprehension on the days leading up to results day. Though not disappointed with my results, I couldn’t seem to grasp the happiness or pride my peers experienced when receiving them since the grades were not earned like how they usually were. Despite knowing this, parents and children alike still continued their game of comparing results like they do every year; figuring out who did the best, who did the worst, who did just average. GCSE results seemed so insignificant when compared to the myriad of problems we faced and we will still continue to face and yet, on this seemingly insignificant day, I was able to look past the apprehension for the first time during the Pandemic.

College began and I, along with many others, had to get used to a new environment, new teachers, and new peers and for the very first time, new safety restrictions. Stay two metres apart, keep your masks on in the hallway, eat your lunch outside, tie your hair up, and don’t share equipment were some of the rules often repeated by the teachers. At first I had believed schools would shut down after the realisation that things wouldn’t work, but as the weeks passed and I was still obliged to wake up at the crack of dawn to attend my lessons, that belief slowly dissipated. Hope seemed to be a lot more attainable after that.

Now, after schools have shut down again, we still maintain a sense of normalcy through being taught virtually since we’ve learn to adapt after the first time. However, the issue of school pales in comparison to the suffering many people have endured during these difficult times, and though I will never fully understand since I have not lived through it, I hope people who have will continue to live contentedly. I hope we all try to see the glass half full rather than half empty, I hope in our circumstances, we live with caution rather than fear and I hope people will be able to communicate with people face to face than through a screen soon. These circumstances have made me hope for a lot of non trivial things but most of all, I hope we put our trust in our Lord. We all have limited control over the situation so we should continue on with our lives doing the best we can and hoping for better days to come; the rest is up to Allah.

Rushda Abusary