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By Layla Kosara February 14, 2024

Anxiety: Rooted in Uncertainty

My anxiety is rooted in uncertainty.
I grew up in a family that stayed together for the kids
Every day was a roller coaster of uncertainty
Will they get divorced

I grew up in a country that didn't accept me for who I am
Born there yet still a foreigner
My parents slaved away for 15 years
Yet at any moment, we could get deported
I saw my best friends “forever” get told they have a week to leave
I lived in a state of uncertainty
Unsure if I could stay in the house I called home

I grew up in a war zone
Uncertain if the military plane flying over us was coming to take out us
Or a family who lived on the “enemy side”
Uncertain if I would get to wake up and go to school
I live uncertain if the job I am studying for will still exist when I graduate

I live uncertain of whether the government that rules over us
Will still be there tomorrow
Or will we be engulfed in a revolution

The same kind of revolution that took 60% of my family with it
The same revolution that promised my aunts and uncles a better life
They were all certain that the revolution would help them raise their kids in a better country
And certain that the revolution would come and that they would be there

They were correct
About it changing life
But wrong that it would be in a good way
They were correct about participating in it
But wrong they would survive it

And by the age of 9, I could no longer take it
At the age of 11, I could no longer bear it
At the age of 14, I was certain it would be my last year

But I was foolish
Foolish to think I have the ability to be certain
If my life has taught me anything
It is that the only certainainty
Is that there will always be an end.

Friendships will come to an end.
Family members will meet their end.
Cherished objects will one day land in a bin.

Every empire came to an end.
So did every government in the past.
And our current governments will.

Every throbbing headache will end.
Either we'll endure until the pain ends.
Or the pain will see us come to an end.

All deadlines will come to an end.
Every work shift will end.
Every day will come to an end.
Every week, month, semester and year will come to an end.

We have no way out
We like it or not
We want it or not
It will end.

In the sea of uncertainty
We must take comfort and security
In the fact that it will come to an end.

Will end.

We like it or not
We want it or not
It will end.

The job you hate will come to an end.
The job you love will come to an end.
The job you are studying for will one day become obsolete.
But what can you do about it?

We like it or not
We want it or not
Everything will certainly end.
How? When? Why?
We don't know
We may know
We may not survive to know
But at least in the sea of uncertainty,
we can take comfort in the certainty that everything will end.

Even this poem had to certainly come to an end.
Either completed in the submission box
Or half-finished, concealed away in my draft files
The ending was uncertain
But the end was certain
And now we both know how it went.

Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

About the author

Layla Kosara is second-year liberal arts student in the morning, a Cal nerd in the afternoon, a hospital security guard at night and a Model UN delegate on the weekend.

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