We are quickly approaching one full year of quarantine, and I feel like I am still trying to process what happened last March. Strangely enough, I miss the initial few weeks when lockdown first began even though, at the time, I was confused, frustrated, and lonely. While scrolling through TikTok, I have seen people try to recreate the challenges that were popular last March, such as making whipped coffee and tie-dying clothes with bleach. However, I think that people are doing this for more reasons besides the fact that it is fun. I believe everyone is trying to hold onto that sense of nostalgia because it is one of the only times that the world has collectively come together and been allowed to process what is happening. There was still hope that life would soon return to normal, and for the most part, the weeks following March 17th were the only ones where everyone seemed to take the pandemic seriously.
Personally, although I am sure other people have the same experience, hearing “Supalonely” by BENEE and “Say So” by Doja Cat instantly takes me back to last March. We all thought we would be off school for only two weeks, so we binged watched “Tiger King” and the ‘’Outer Banks” while video chatting with our friends for hours. At the time, we weren’t burnt out from being forced to work during a pandemic. To me, it seems like this was the only time we could genuinely rest and take a break from the fast-paced nature of society without feeling guilty.
Now, we have all been forced to adapt to this “new normal.” As a fully remote student, I stare at my computer screen for at least five hours a day and have definitely experienced Zoom fatigue. Once again, society feels fast-paced and the same pre-pandemic expectations are placed upon us. We have to act as full-time students without any leeway because of the pandemic. It is draining and exhausting, especially for those of us (myself included) that continue to social distance and limit contact with other people. After a year of self-isolation, I wish we could go back to last March when everyone was on the same page regarding the pandemic. It felt so refreshing to go on hikes, do paint-by-numbers, and endlessly scroll through TikTok without any shame.
I have such a love-hate relationship with the beginning of the pandemic. I definitely do miss the “vibes” of it; however, I am still resentful of all it has taken from me and so many others. Hopefully, the end will soon be in sight as people continue to get vaccinated. Until then, please wear a mask, continue to social distance, and stay safe.