Finding the Positives in Covid-19

Elizabeth Rickards, Staff Writer, Advanced Journalism

Honestly, I have more reason to dislike my COVID experience than most, and yet finding the positives keeps me being thankful for COVID at the same time as being unthankful for it. Here are some reasons that COVID was positive this year:

  • Nature Appreciation (You’re welcome, Mr. Winkler)

Since COVID, I have found myself and others spending more time in nature and really immersing ourselves in the environment. More people have been walking, taking hikes, camping, and just spending time outside and not on their phones. Fewer people drove and, like our principal, walked or biked to where they needed to go. This is great because it helps more and more people realize how important and special our environment is and how much we need to take care of it. 

  • Self Care

Spending time on the self is so important for people, and, in a society with high depression and anxiety rates in teens, self-care has never been so important. We can reflect on the good things and the bad things, and we can work on improving our self esteems or our self-image. COVID gave us the time and space to meditate on self-growth, improvement, strengthen our faith in God, and to focus on our mental health and our life so far. 

  • Finding new hobbies

I cannot tell you the number of people who started new hobbies or found new and fun things to keep themselves busy. With the help of the school, some kids learned new cooking skills, while others discovered a new book obsession, built a table, or did a puzzle (the number of puzzles my parents did was very concerning). To tie in with nature, a lot of people discovered they like hiking, kayaking, fishing, or taking walks outside. In a more serious thought, people joined important movements, like BLM, and found their interest in politics and social movements to help improve the world to be more righteous and equal.  It doesn’t matter if they weren’t good at it, or didn’t want to at first.  In the end, they did end up doing something, even getting people involved to help them have new hobbies as well.

  • New and better relationships

Being quarantine at home is not the worst thing that I had previously thought. People spent copious amounts of time with their families, whether they learned a hobby with the family, or did a family puzzle. People learned to really appreciate and build a better relationship with family, and even friends. Friends hosted zoom calls and could just talk with all the free time they had. People found new relationships with new people and established better relationships with old friends. People also helped support their communities, by donating food or volunteering at St. John’s. Even the smallest gesture, like ordering food every “takeout Tuesday,” to help support local business is a great way to further your relationships with people and your community. 

  • Increase in adoptions and fostering

Across the nation and even the world, people adopted or fostered kids and pets so much, giving them a home and stability in a time that wasn’t. Giving people and animals a home is such a gracious and humble thing to do, and so many people gave them that while also giving themselves a social connection. 

  • Major respect for health care workers, scientists, and schools

Before I write this positive, I want to take a sentence and thank all of the health care workers, all the doctors, nurses, physicians, scientists, everyone and anyone who devotes themselves to stop the spread of COVID. Thank You for everything you do!

Through this pandemic, respect and growing prayers for healthcare workers have really shown themselves in an example of amazing and positive ways. People support so many of them in their communities and show their care and support by signs or baking cookies.

 Another growing respect is for teachers, maintenance staff, and all school employees who are trying their best to keep themselves safe, as well as their families and their students. I know Mr. Masarik, Mr. Browne, and the administration are working hard and trying their best to bring everyone together safely because if teachers get sick, the kids will have no one to learn from.

Thank you to everyone who works at schools, especially everyone at Notre Dame!

  • A cool senior year

As a senior, it is probably expected for me to be angry about my senior year being ruined, but honestly, I wasn’t. COVID gave me time to reflect on the critical things in my life, and not the things that will only be remembered through a dress. I knew that in the end, nothing would’ve changed, and even though my last football tailgate and last Fall Fest were last year’s, I’m not angry because I know it would be the same experience this year. Not saying that they are boring, unchanged, or not fun, but I wouldn’t feel indifferent or saddened by the thought of it being my last. Also, I know some committed teachers who are dedicated to making our senior year good as best as they can.

Yes, COVID was the worst, but it also was the best for a lot of reasons. It happened and is still happening, and we need to realize– I implore you all–to see some positives of COVID, and maybe even do some of the things above before it ends.