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Emily Veith

Adjusting to a New “Normal”

I’ll be the first to say it. I have been in my pajamas on and off going on what is definitely the tenth day now. I haven’t worn any makeup, unusual for someone who would otherwise never go a day without acne concealer and mascara. I have not tended to my obnoxiously curly hair, leaving it in what will soon be dreadlocks if no other actions are taken. While I am aware that everyone is currently facing different circumstances and home lives, I think we can all agree that we are far outside our definition of ‘normal’. Many of us would currently be on campus, partaking in our daily routine of going (or not going) to class, attending club meetings, and hanging out with our friends and/or roommates. I know I’m not alone in saying that I desperately miss the way of life that I had created at school. As someone with anxiety, I am very disrupted by such an abrupt change. I am very used to completing a routine at school and it has genuinely affected the plans I had made, both on a short-term and long-term level. While I am very obviously not an expert – you would know if you could see my appearance right now – I want to share a few tips that have helped me get through the past two weeks being at home when I’m wishing I was somewhere else. 


  1. It is okay to be frustrated with your circumstances. Be pissed off. Be upset. Cry. But then understand that this is out of your control. You are where you are meant to be and you are healthy and safe. 

  2. Take this time to do something that is new and exciting. Or something you have been waiting to do, but haven’t had the time. I spontaneously decided to paint my room a couple days ago. I needed a change that I could control and it felt good to do something that I knew would make me happy. 

  3. Take advantage of ~Zoom~. Make it a happy place. Call your college friends, call your home friends; y’all should all have accounts now. 

  4. Go outside. You don’t have to be a ‘nature person’ or an ‘outdoorsy person’ to be a human that needs fresh air to feel refreshed. Take a walk, a hike, go outside and let the sun hit your face. It’ll almost be like you are tanning on spring break. 

  5. Write down your emotions in a journal. Although I presume we won’t soon forget this feeling of isolation, you’re going to want to look back and reflect on this experience in the future. It might help you feel more thankful for where you will be in the next few months, in your true ‘normal’. 

  6. Be kind. Be understanding. Be generous. Not everyone is as fortunate as you might be. Think of those who do not have home lives they want to return to or those who do not have homes at all. Think of those who cannot buy in bulk (unncessarily) because they cannot afford to buy food at all. Think of the vulnerable, those who cannot protect themselves. You’ve heard it all before: do your part. 

  7. Stay positive, you’ll be singing at the top of your lungs and dancing with your best friends soon enough. This too shall pass.

Hi! I'm Abby, an International Relations major with minors in French and Peace and Justice. I am passionate about working on social justice issues in my community so that is my main focus in school. I love to be outside in any ways possible and in my free time, I find most peace in writing, specifically poetry.
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