Reframing My Social Distancing Experience–Positivity Amidst COVID-19

Sunshine. Birdsong. My dogs playing together in the grass, enjoying the warm weather for the first time this season. I’m standing on my back deck with my family, a cold drink in my hand, and despite all the anxiety and chaos of the past few weeks, I actually feel really, genuinely happy.

These moments have been harder to come by lately. It’s difficult to feel like things are okay when our routines have been so seriously disrupted. I miss Comm. Ave., the Warren Towers Starbucks on a Sunday, my best friends, my classmates. I miss knowing what my schedule looks like, and I miss spontaneous trips to concerts and movies and restaurants. It’s frustrating not knowing when everything will return to normal, and being cooped up in the house while social distancing provides plenty of time to dwell on everything about this month that is missing.  

SP Home Rep Artem Beliaikin on Unsplash

But as I settle into doing my classes from home, I’ve found so many more small moments of positivity than I was expecting to. I can see the stars better from here than I can in the city. I have my piano, and my old bedroom, and a well-stocked kitchen. I can spend time with my family, work on myself, and return to campus with a deeper appreciation for the life that I have built for myself there.

Sometimes I can’t help but feel everything I’m missing out on right now. I get lost in all the small aspects of my life that have been disrupted and that are now inaccessible for a reason that is totally out of my control. But I’m safe, and I’m healthy. The people I love are healthy, and this experience will pass. When this is over, we’ll hug each other a little harder, love a little deeper, and I know I’ll look at the Citgo sign with a new appreciation for this place that we get to call home. Until then, I’m holding on to the little things.

Photo by Thought Catalog from Unsplash

There are so many people providing advice right now on how to stay positive while social distancing. There are lists of Netflix shows and books, new skills to pick up, art projects to resume, and hours of Tik Toks to scroll through. But although these activities can be great distractions, no amount of TV can change the fact that we’re all missing out on the bulk of our spring semester. Rather than dwell on what we’re missing, I’m going to try my best to hold on to the things I’ve gained. I am still making memories here, and there is so much about this time to appreciate. I am reframing my social distancing experience not as an interruption, but as the next chapter in the crazy, occasionally frustrating story of my life.    

Stay positive, Her Campus.


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