While in the midst of working towards goals and new year’s resolutions and enjoying the freshness of new beginnings in a new year, who would have thought an evil, vicious virus would strip away normal routines, personal growth and happiness of daily interactions with our loved ones?
Something as unpredictable as Covid-19 has us scared and isolated us from each other. This global pandemic has citizens from all countries watch new findings, research, and destruction unfold in front of them on their television screens and from their windows. No one would ever expect people to be acting so frantically from people jumping from the sounds of coughs and clearing the shelves of toilet paper.
On March 16, I was stripped away from daily campus life and activities. Being forced to move out of the dorm I knew as home, leave my job, leave my friends and partner and go back to my hometown and just isolate myself in the house with my family all happened so quick.
It was as much as it sounds, and happened too fast to the point where it doesn’t all catch up to you until days and days go by. Then, as you look at the news and see the number of Covid-19 cases rise and the death toll increasing, what originally felt like an extended spring break began to feel like indefinite house arrest.
It takes communication and understanding to figure out how to maneuver efficiently in a household and keep everyone’s health in mind along with their sanity. In my hometown, before statewide protective guidelines were being issued and enforced, a curfew and restrictions for businesses was put in place to contain the spread of the virus in Athens, Ga. All residents were expected to shelter-in-place by 9pm every evening and limiting day time travel to essentials, like work and the grocery store.
All non-essential businesses closed down completely while all essentials closed at 9pm. That meant no more late night food runs, no more nail dates with friends, or just riding around viewing the city. All the things that brought daily pleasures and stress relief from daily activities like school and work. No one had the perfect plan for how not to let anxiety levels rise which could lead to bickering between family members.
That is where the communication part comes in. For example, in my home we all get and start our day as we would if the restrictions were not in place. We alternate cooking breakfast for one another, and get dressed. My father works at a factory that is still considered essential, so he has to risk contracting the virus every day and potentially expose my mother and I.
It is dangerous considering my mother is more vulnerable to the virus due to her having hypertension. She is the most understanding during this time. She is sure to plan an outdoor activity everyday because she is aware of how hard the transition has been for me. I am used to being free, living the college life. She tries to duplicate some of my experiences at home such as Taco Tuesdays. I believe if everyone works together to social distance and follow the guidelines set for our state we can together overcome the virus. It has been hard to transition, but finding a quarantine routine that is right for you and communication about feelings can help everyone cope with a time that is difficult and surprising for everyone globally. We have to remember that it is not a personal matter.