|Description||A student reflects on their anxieties of going back to school in-person after the pandemic.|
A student reflects on the social isolation and loneliness he experienced during the pandemic. Now that he is allowed to go back to school, he is anxious and apprehensive. This monologue is the character’s internal dialogue, not a conversation.
Written by Lauren Woods
I haven’t gone to school in-person in a year and a half. I haven’t seen anyone, really. I think I’ve forgotten how to interact with people. I thought I was awkward before but now it’s even worse. I know that everyone’s gonna be staring at me and judging me no matter what I do. I’m going to be alone. I don’t want to go. I’m not going! They can’t make me. I’m staying online where I don’t need to try to talk to these people. When I was on Zoom, I could turn off my camera and nobody could see me. But there’s no hiding anymore. You’d log into the meeting and log out once it was over. There were no passing periods or breaks. Now doing anything requires social interaction! I can handle being lonely, but only when nobody else is there to realize how alone I truly am. They all hate me. What did I ever do to them? I remember when, a year into the pandemic, I had seen Caleb, who used to be my best friend, in the grocery store. It was the first time we had seen each other in person since this all started. But I couldn’t talk to him anymore. I used to tell him everything and I had nothing to say. It’s like there’s a veil around me now, isolating me from everyone else. They don’t understand me and I don’t understand them. I don’t understand myself either. I used to think that connecting with others was hard, but now I know that it’s impossible. Talking to people is like being trapped in your own body, incapable of showing anyone who you truly are. (It hits them) Nobody’s ever going to know who I actually am. I’ve always been alone. (Pauses to show the audience how isolated they truly are. Startles as if they heard noises coming from a specific direction. Genuinely panicked) Someone’s coming! (Regretful at having to put their identity away once again, pained) I have to go. (Runs offstage).