At the beginning of this year, If someone had told you “There will be a worldwide pandemic due to a virus that will close schools for the rest of the 2019/2020 school year” you would have thought it was an unrealistic joke? Some people are still processing what happened these past few months.
During quarantine, maintaining good mental health has become very important. Having to isolate at home has been hard on many. People are urged to check on their loved ones, and some got creative when it came to staying in touch with others.
Everyone’s reactions to school closing were different.
“When I first heard about quarantine I didn’t mind it because I thought I would enjoy a three week break,” said senior Huda Aljazi.
Another student thought it was a joke at the beginning.
“[It was] very shocking at first, and I saw how serious this was, and this isn’t anything to joke about,” said senior Hannah Robertson.
Junior Arwin Vang was concerned about “how school was gonna go,” but in March no one really knew the answers to anything. Teachers reached out to their students and said to keep busy. They encouraged them to use this time to create a new hobby. Some students planned to use their quarantine time to stay mentally motivated. Others started doing exercises so they wouldn’t be lazy.
“I wanted to stop being so lazy and get some exercise. I planned on doing things that are productive and not being trapped in my room the whole time,” said Aljazi.
Robertson wanted to spend her quarantine free time by being there for others and taking care of her own well being.
”[I tried to] focus on me and my schooling and figure out things that I can help people with,” said Robertson.
Besides staying physically healthy, mental health during COVID is a big concern.
All around the world many were concerned about how to deal with being isolated. High school students with important tests like SAT/ACT were struggling on how to stay optimistic about the future and important upcoming events.
“To stay positive I listened to music and went running,” said junior Anthony Serna.
Others found their happiness in being able to be with their family.
“Quarantine had been boring but I feel pretty happy because I have my family with me feeling the same way I feel and we are getting through it together,” said Aljazi.
Staying home hasn’t been a negative thing for some people. It was easy for some at the beginning. But they realized they did miss how things were.
“It was easy at first because I could finally stay home… but then I missed going outside and doing things,” said Robertson.
Not having school was harder for others. Not being able to socialize face to face was a big loss.
“It was challenging in a way because most people don’t like school at all, but when you’re away from it for so long, you start to realize how much you miss it. School is a big part of your life and what makes you who you are,” said Serna.
No one yet knows when things will turn around. As fall leads into winter, cases are rising dramatically. The ability to socially distance outside that summer provided has gone away, and indoor gatherings have become dangerous. So far, though, the state has not ordered the dramatic quarantine we saw in the spring.
After the spring’s Stay At Home order was lifted, people were able to move around again. Outlooks on life became different. Some used this opportunity to learn more about themselves.
“What I will take on with life after going through this whole pandemic is that every single day counts, so make the most of each and every one,” said Aljazi.