By Liza Cohen

My first day started with a discussion on Willpower.

It takes a tremendous amount of it to do things you don’t want to do.

But our brain only makes so much willpower for each day,

So we find ourselves fatigued at the end of them.


“How many classes did you have there?”

“What’s it like being back?”

“Wait do you even go here?”

“Where were you?”

“What did you do? I don’t get it.”

Join the club.


I don’t get it either.

I don’t get why that day was the longest day

I don’t get how I’m already back here

I don’t get why everything feels so different

And I don’t get how nothing has changed


I escaped.

I didn’t go to California like I’ve been saying forever.

But I got out of this bubble that we are all trapped in.

And when I left, that bubble popped, and can never be built up again.

I went to New York.


It’s right around the corner,

This enchanting place.

The people there, they all escaped too.

They got out of their own bubbles, and they went to a place where they could belong.

Everyone has a place, everyone has a purpose.


Everybody seems famous in New York.

It’s an attitude.

It’s a walk that says:

“I’m better than you, I’m bigger than you, than all of this.”

I’m trying to master that attitude.


I can’t explain what’s different now.

But I can feel it.

I can feel it in the bored faces of my peers as I look around the room.

I can feel it in the way I don’t get anxious about small things anymore.

I can feel it in my independence.

I can feel it in my desires, my goals, my priorities.

Everything has changed. 


It takes willpower to get yourself through everyday,

It takes willpower to not sweat the small stuff,

It takes willpower to put in that extra effort in anything you do, to know it will pay off.


For me, it takes willpower to be back here, to put a smile on my face.

To have grades, and tests, to raise my hand in class.

To feel trapped into this path which many before and many after will journey through.


“Are you lost?”

Yes. It sure feels that way.