Girl Reading A Book In Bed

How Doing Things I Enjoyed as a Kid Is Helping Me Cope With Quarantining in My Childhood Home

The opinions expressed in this article are the author's own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

Like most college students in the United States, the second half of my Spring Semester looked nothing like I planned. In January, I thought I’d be spending the next 16 weeks studying, exploring New York and hanging out with friends — typical college behavior. On March 14th, when I went back home to Indianapolis for spring break, I didn’t know I’d be staying there for the foreseeable future. While I was in Indy, my college—like so many others—made the decision that we would not be returning for on-campus classes. 

Transitioning back to my family home was not easy. I recognize my extreme privilege, to have a roof over my head and a family where everyone is safe and healthy, but I don’t think it’s wrong to acknowledge that it’s been a tough adjustment. For me, college has always been about so much more than just taking classes and studying subjects. In addition to everything I’ve learned academically, these past three years have also taught me what I’m passionate about, how to be independent, how to make friends, how to think for myself and how to organize my time. It will always be the place where I grew into a young adult.

Related: 6 Tips For Surviving Quarantine With Your Parents

Suddenly, I was thrown back into adolescence all over again. It felt like I’d taken two steps back. I was fighting with my sister over stupid things, angry I had to follow my parents’ rules I never agreed with again, and living in a bedroom full of memories I would have honestly liked to keep in the past. In simple terms, I felt like a kid. Little did I realize, being a kid is exactly what I needed. 

Children inside Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash A couple of weeks ago, I decided I was done being angry with a situation I couldn’t control and chose to lean into it instead. I started watching movies from my childhood, reading books I used to love, and participating in activities I used to enjoy simply because I enjoyed them, with no strings attached. I’ve rewatched all of the High School Musical movies and I’m currently re-reading the Percy Jackson series. One day I even listened to the entire One Direction discography top to bottom. I’ve also been running on the same path I used to love in high school and taking socially distant walks around my old soccer fields. 

Feeling young again, and doing things that make me feel like a kid is the exact coping mechanism I need. It feels like—if only for an hour or two—I can look at the world through the innocence of a child. I’m not worrying about if my last semester of college will be canceled or if I'll find a job when I graduate. I’m not thinking about the responsibilities that come with being an adult. Instead, I’m screaming along to “What Makes You Beautiful” and wondering if Troy and Gabriella made it work after high school. I feel like I did when I first experienced all of these things, without a care in the world.    

Now also seems like the perfect opportunity to read the new Twilight or Hunger Games books, and listen to this new Harry Potter podcast where cast members read chapters from The Sorcerer’s Stone. Talk about good timing! I’m extremely excited to be transported back to these worlds in a completely new way, living in their magic all over again.

It’s crazy how when we’re young, being a kid is an insult. “Stop acting like a little kid!” seems to be a popular cry among bullies. We never see the beauty that comes with childhood: curiosity, imagination, innocence — doing things just because you like them, not because you have to. 

Related: 7 Things to Look Forward to Post-Quarantine 

I’m not encouraging everyone to fully regress back to their middle school selves, we do still have responsibilities, but taking the time to remember where you come from and what makes you, you is extremely important, especially as we approach an uncertain future.