LA CROSSE, WIS — Citing upcoming online midterms, a boyfriend who flirts with other girls, a troubling decision over whether to purchase a Lexus or an Acura this summer, and quarantining amidst the coronavirus outbreak, Viterbo senior Carlie Keaning can’t even right now.
A series of fortuitous commitments, engagements, and other dealings have created a perfect storm, and the aspiring social media marketing professional and part-time lifestyle Instagrammer is totally stressing.
“Ugh. For real,” said Keaning with an assertive eye roll and sigh as she flipped her neatly curled hair from her Louis Vuitton scarf back over her cashmere sweater. “I can’t even go there. Can’t. Even.”
Keaning, who also had to cancel her spring break plans in Fort Lauderdale, attributes her high stress lifestyle to having a lot going on, like, all the time.
“I mean seriously, you guys. It’s crazy. Ca-razy!” the 22-year-old said as her Apple Watch displayed an alert for 10:00 AM virtual hot yoga on Zoom.
“I’m just going to have to start telling people, ‘Whatever!’ You know?”
Keaning said this kind of quality communication, alongside other healthy coping strategies, helps her manage daily stress.
“Coffee helps, too,” Keaning, wide-eyed, said with an uncomfortably-loud laugh between sips of her double mocha frappuccino.
Jokes like this, which nobody has ever heard before, help Keaning and her friends stay grounded and keep a good natured perspective. Keaning also tries to embrace serenity amidst her changing circumstances.
“Here, look at this,” Keaning whispered as she rolled her Calvin Klein legging up from her high-heeled bootie, revealing a tattoo featuring a trio of small Chinese symbols nestled in willow leaves.
“This one means steadfast, and this one means ‘senergy’, which is a combination of synergy and energy. And this one means forever,” she said, turning to gaze out the window.
Reporter Greg Lovell contributed to this article.