COVID-19 has impacted the world. Businesses have shut down. People are forced to quarantine. Schools have had to adapt to a safer way to teach students. As a result of schools having to take precautions to keep students safe, some students have found themselves being required to stay home to quarantine. I was one of those students. For the past week, being quarantined has impacted my life in many ways. To list a few, my school dynamic has shifted to an online-based format, I have had to postpone a majority of my athletics, and I have experienced a lack of social interaction.
After testing positive for COVID-19 due to exposure from another student, I was informed that I would need to be quarantined for ten days which meant that I could not attend school. I was quickly able to adapt and learn remotely through Zoom classes that my teachers provided. However, this transition was not totally smooth. I had technology issues, school projects I was not able to take part in, and quizzes that will have to be made up. Staying active in my journalism class also proved to be a challenge as it was much more difficult to do my responsibilities without having contact with the student body. As a journalist, the ability to make a connection with the person I am interviewing is paramount. Conducting interviews on zoom or through email exchanges was difficult and it made for less engaging material for my stories.
On the other hand, being home and having an excess amount of free time allowed me to get ahead on my school work for dual enrollment classes. Although I was able to work ahead, I would prefer to be in class and learning on campus. As a whole, learning in class is much more advantageous as there are fewer distractions; and it is easier to complete all assignments.
Being quarantined also took a toll on my athletic activities. I am a baseball player for the McIntosh team as well as a summer travel league and having to quit most forms of practice was necessary to keep my exposure to other people to a minimum. I was no longer able to take one-on-one lessons or even enter the building we used to practice. A regular week of practice usually involves a one-on-one lesson with a catching coach, around an hour spent in a batting cage five times a week working on my swing, and one or two days on a field throwing and practicing other drills. Most of these practices were no longer safe to do around other people, and as a result, I was left to find other ways to improve.
I spent time alone at a local running track working on my speed as well as in my garage working on my hitting form. Although I lost valuable time with coaches and teammates, I was still able to find alternative ways to practice.
To no surprise, being quarantined also took a toll on the social aspect of my life. For most of the week, I was stowed away in my room with zero face-to-face contact with my friends, girlfriend, or extended family. It was difficult; however, I minimized contact with my immediate family as well. Even the family dog was to not get too much attention from me as she roams the house freely and could pass the virus onto my other family members. The lack of social interaction was by far the hardest part of quarantining for me. Socializing is a very important activity that I took for granted before it was taken away from me. The social deprivation I endured took its toll on my mental health. I was tired all the time, easily irritated, and negative thoughts filled my head all the time it seemed.
Thankfully, it is over now and I will soon be able to partake in all the fun social activities that senior year has in store.