What I’ve Learned in a Pandemic
By Erica Fish
When the first news broke out about the novel Coronavirus this past March, everyone’s lives did a 180.
Scrambling in figuring out what’s going on, while hectically flipping back and forth through the news channels, being informed that international flights were canceled, to schools and universities closing and then the country going on lockdown… We’ve really gone to hell and back.
It doesn’t even seem like it’s been close to a year, as it now marks eight months of all of us experiencing this global pandemic.
Facial masks and social distancing have become a natural habit, well, for those who’ve abided to following CDC guidelines and state to nationwide mandates.
I do not take this pandemic lightly as countless lives have been lost, but I do feel that COVID-19 has taken over our lives more than it should. Yes, we must worry and we need to continue taking preventative measures, but I’ve learned to not obsess over it.
When visiting friends and family, the majority of the conversation is about COVID-19. I feel like I gossip more about a virus than I do about actual people.
Obsessing over something can create more anxiety and this pandemic has already shredded people emotionally, mentally, and financially.
Newscasts and health updates are the only reliable sources I go to regarding any recent impacts or what the potential breakthroughs have been surrounding this virus.
Wearing masks and facial coverings prevent others from becoming infected or limit the spreading, you would think this would settle with people, but it doesn’t.
Even though Florida is a “No Mask State”, which totally baffles me- I get worked up seeing people not wearing in masks. It’s your choice and it’s your right, but I still don’t understand why a person won’t do a simple task that could lead to a turnaround.
The lesson learned here is that you need to worry about yourself and only yourself. If you’re doing your part, then you’ve proven you do care about the well-being of humanity.
The pandemic has also taught me how lucky I am to be able to work and still be employed.
As a full-time student and second-year Resident Assistant, I’ve been able to tackle a handful of responsibilities… Stressful responsibilities I should add.
I recently read an article from Boston University about why being a Resident Assistant during COVID-19 is one of the toughest jobs on campus… The article could not be truer.
It can be challenging to build a community effectively when following safety guidelines, and an RA’s job is to befriend all students they’re responsible over, but then if the policy is broken, you’re mandated to report.
I’ve learned that not everyone I am in charge of will listen to me, other superiors, or abide by the rules set by the university or housing department.
The pattern I’ve seen is that the students and residents who complain the most about coronavirus and the pandemic’s impact, have been the ones who have not been correctly following the guidelines enforced on campus.
People are going to be selfish no matter what. Even though they’re putting themselves, you, and others at risk, that’s their choice. They can deal with the consequences of it.
Understanding what relationships matter to you the most, helps take care of yourself.
When you prioritize what’s most important to you, you remember what the importance of kindness does for others who may be dealing with more challenges due to the pandemic.
Even though it is more difficult to come to a resolution now, keeping in mind how precious life is, helps show how we need to continue to appreciate.
Mankind has been able to overcome a number of trials and one of the efforts we can still act on, is focusing on what you can do in bettering the circumstances.
Fear can destroy us, but conformity is one of the most resilient acts we can do during this unknown time we continue to live through.