A restriction on face-to-face encounters, relying on technology more than ever, and the need to take advantage of staying at home. These are the things most of us have seen as a burden — or a blessing.

By Laura Caicedo, Staff Writer

12:15 PM is the time I have grown used to waking up lately ever since my sleep schedule went to ruins. I now find myself going to bed when I hear birds chirping — the sky becoming lighter and lighter. 

Since I’m staying on campus, I take advantage of the five meals that I have paid for through my meal plan C. The food is the same, although there are less options now since there are only 29 of us staying: some international students like me, others that live too far away, and a few who have decided to stay due to infrastructure difficulties (or just because they feel that Huntington is the safest choice). We have paid for this already, right?

After eating in my room or with a friend outside the DC, I go back to my room and try to busy myself with whatever can keep my hands and head busy until intrusive thoughts come to my mind. They tell me to do something with this “free” time given to me.

I should learn a new language.

I should start learning how to draw like I always wanted to.

I should tidy everything, organize my clothes, paint my nails.

I should do something “worthy” of my time.

Instead, like most of us probably, I go on Instagram and spent my time watching other people probably thinking the same as me: I should be making something out of this quarantine.

Then, it sunk in. 

I don’t need to. I won’t be lesser, or greater. 

The people who have done great things, have just done that: great things. Does it concern me directly? Not really, but I still find a way to compare what I have learned or done with what they are doing. 

It seems I have been pushed to be always moving and always being on top of my studies, my social life, how I look and how I spend my alone time. Now that my routine has shifted, I have no clue how to keep it together without it crumbling. 

As observant creatures, we tend to take notes on how others are doing. I do think it is good and healing to create something out of these times as they make us remember how uncertain the future is – and it has always been like that – yet, I wonder, why are we always rushing towards it?

Wouldn’t it be easier to let it come? To let it swoop in when the timing is right? 

This is not a race, but we still see ourselves as the last one, gulping for air as we scramble to even keep up with all the runners.

This pandemic is bigger that us learning how to make sourdough, or paint that corner in the garage we always see but never seem to remember to do. 

This is only the beginning of it, and the uncertainty of what is to come is enough to make me realize that sacrificing some things now will be rewarded later. The things that I do now will be rewarded later – but how I do so, it will depend on me and only me.