Alexa, play “Summertime Sadness”
By Asha Baron, Collegian Satire Columnist
September 14, 2022
Every year when summer rolls around, the excitement of being out of school returns to many of us students. It’s our time to travel the world, have a major glow-up and become the mentally stable person we’ve always dreamed of (that last one might just be me). We then return to school in the fall, having accomplished nothing.
This year, hot girl summer is out. Depressed girl summer is in.
At the end of the last school year, I was ready for summer. I left on a hot streak; I just had an op-ed published, in which I openly discussed my mental health issues using humor to reach out to people. I participated in an amazing student-directed short film, meeting some really cool people and giving an Oscar-worthy performance along the way, if I do say so myself (and I do). And, I successfully finished my first year of college.
I unfortunately was gently slammed back into reality when instead of getting a call from Lorne Michaels inviting me to Saturday Night Live, I returned to my hometown of Silver Spring, Maryland.
Don’t get me wrong, I did try to have an eventful summer. I applied to several jobs in my hometown and none of them got back to me. I tried to go to therapy, and my therapist ghosted me – several times. I tried to meet up with my high school friend, but when I reached out, she flew to Florida and stayed there all summer. In a nutshell, nobody wanted me this summer.
I tried to switch my life up to keep it interesting throughout the summer. I switched my medication in hopes that it would make my summer a little more bearable. I was off my meds for one day and had a meltdown at midnight about how stupid my glasses look on my face. This lasted for an hour.
I know what you’re thinking: “You must be using this time to relax and to reset your mental health for a more productive school year!” Nope. I did nothing for months and somehow, I’m still not ready for classes. I stared at the wall and slept all day, much like my two cats, and still did not manage to squeeze in a moment of relaxation.
I learned several important lessons this summer. I learned that my depression doesn’t discriminate against the time of year. I don’t have seasonal affective disorder (SAD) or reverse SAD, I’m just sad. All the time. It’s great!
I also learned that hot girl summer is a state of mind. The real hot girl summer was inside us all along, I think. Anyone can have a hot girl summer, but it’s easier when you don’t sit around in your room all day and become so pale your reflection is no longer visible in the mirror.
It’s okay if you didn’t do amazing things over the summer, or even great things, or good things, or things for that matter. Doing neutral things to get you through the long months of summer is okay. And hey, even if you did something bad, that’s fine. You’ll probably figure it out. And if not, you’ll enter your villain era. Either way, you’ll be fine.
Asha Baron can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @ashajbaron.