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When you find yourself at home for any extended period of time, it can be difficult to find things to keep you occupied––regardless of a pandemic. This past winter break, I had accepted my fate of a six-week quarantine due to how people are responding to mask mandates and restaurant closures. Since I am high-risk, I knew I couldn’t hang out with my friends who have customer service jobs, so it was mostly just my parents, my dog, and I. 

At the beginning, it was nice! I didn’t have a schedule to keep so I stayed up late a few nights and woke up when I felt like it; I watched who knows how many TikToks, caught up on my T.V. shows, and fully embraced the thought of not having school until after the New Year. 

That lasted maybe a week or two.

[bf_image id="jqx9kg3zm6cm833ggjx66bpn"] I started to get anxiety at night for no reason, other than a lack of things to worry or even think about. I told my mom I was antsy while we were watching T.V. one night, and she told me I should pick up a book instead of a screen. As obvious and simple as it sounds, it worked! I still scrolled through my feeds and kept my streaks alive, but after an hour or two, I made myself put my phone down and open my book. 

Over summer break, I managed to read ten books, including the classic To Kill a Mockingbird, and the newest bestseller The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes. I thought winter would be the same story, and I was excited to add some more titles to my list. I only managed to read one book entirely, though I did start one on New Year’s Day right before school picked up again. 

[bf_image id="bp34mw7qgtcq3k683jkw"] Although I’m an English major, it was hard to get back into reading for fun. With so much stimulation around us at all times and immediate gratification with a simple click, it can be hard to convince ourselves that there’s more than just likes and comments. There’s adventure, heartache, laughter, and so much more all within the pages of a paperback; sometimes I take that for granted. 

But, not anymore! 

My only New Year’s “resolution” is to keep up the good work with reading for fun. I even installed the Goodreads app to keep track of how many books I’ve picked up. So, if you’re like me, and you’ve grown addicted but bored of the content on TikTok or Netflix, try out a book recommended by a friend and see where it takes you! 

Hi, I’m Zoe! I am a sophomore at DU studying English and I’m from Colorado Springs, CO. I love reading and writing, listening to music and attending concerts, and hanging out with my family!
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