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April 28, 2020

Dear 50 year of age self,

Today is the BIG day, it’s graduation day! As I look back on memories 3 years ago, our lives were turned upside down. 2020 supposed to been the start of a new year only for our lives to come to a stop in April. Life was great for me. I was just getting to know a lot of people on UNC campus and I was just beginning to come out of my shell. I looked forward to going to school on Tuesday’s and Thursday’s because school was like a getaway for me. I got to get away from some of my life stresses. When I got the email saying that we would not be returning to class and that all of our classes were going to be remotely online, I was disappointed, scared and left with the fear of never returning to this place that was once my peace.

As things continue to unfold, my anxieties grew, my stress levels were high and I was so afraid of what was to come. But here we are, 3 years later. Yes, it took some time for things to go back to a somewhat of a normal state but things still aren’t 100% as they were back in 2020. As I sit here with all of my UNC classmates, class of 2023, I can’t help but thank God for continuing to keep us in his care so that we would all be here together. 2020 changed my outlook on life. I use to take things for granted. I put off a lot of things that I should’ve done but the virus and the pandemic that entered our lives a couple of years ago, has taught me to live life to its fullest. Never think it can’t happen to us. I hope and I pray that this thing that we experienced in America, April 2020, will prepare us for whatever else is to come.

As I wait to hear my name called to walk across the stage to get my diploma, I still have some anxieties, some fears as to will this happen again. Will my kids have to go through something worse than this when they become adults? I pray to God that they don’t. This is a very exciting day for me and others and I pray that we all be and do what we were all put on this earth for. I am walking into my destiny on today.

Be blessed, I love you so much,

A older and better ME

LaTonya Dalton

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