Many of us turn on the news or open our social media every day and roll our eyes at the "new" COVID news. We all know that it truly isn't new - it's just the same cycle of stuff. First, the mask mandates are lifted, then they're brought back, then people fight about wearing them. You know the drill. I know I was tired of hearing about it, at least all the negative aspects, because nobody really talks about the positives.
First off, we got two weeks off of school- an extended spring break per se. Then we got to spend a month at home with our families. I know that that was not ideal for some families, but for others, it was great to take a break from busy lives and catch up with each other before it was too late. We were starting to do the things you used to do before everyone was "too busy," like family movie nights or board games. Not only was it a break to spend time with family, but to spend some quality time with yourself. To figure out who you are without so many distractions or to find new hobbies because you actually have spare time. Never again in this lifetime will that happen again.
So yeah, the alone time and quality time with family was fabulous, but then it got a little old. We started to miss our friends, shopping, jobs, and all the things that keep us busy. The things that pre-pandemic we would complain about doing. We realized how much we took for granted these things and how much we truly appreciated having them.
On the other hand, you may have found out who your true friends were during this time. The people who were truly there for you showed that they were while the rest showed their true colors. We all dodged some bullets. We were gifted some pretty good Netflix series as well to occupy our time. May "The Society" rest in peace.
Aside from contracting COVID, we stopped catching colds and minor illnesses for a while. We constantly washed our hands and used so much hand sanitizer that our hands would burn and crack. Who knew it needed a pandemic for us to start thinking to do that consistently or that having hand sanitizer in school hallways and shopping malls was necessary. We learned to accept a sick day, not only for our own well-being but for those around us, whether it be a stranger we pass on the street or our best friends and family. We should never have had to fear losing our jobs or failing a test because we had to stay home sick, yet that was the reality.
If you worked in food service, you started to be treated like a human. Someone who makes mistakes and gets stressed, rather than the robot with no feelings and whose world revolves around making people's orders according to their schedules. You got tips, and for a while, I forgot those existed.
For the most part, we treated others with kindness and respect. We were all going through this together, whether we liked it or not. Maybe we did not realize and appreciate all the things the pandemic and lockdown had brought us, but now - over a year later -we should be able to appreciate the things we have learned.