We’re nearing one year of an unhappy anniversary with COVID-19

Written By Chandni Shah, Co-Opinions Editor/Copy Desk Chief

The final days of February are quickly approaching, which means we will soon be in the month of March once again. Yes, that’s right, it’s been almost a year since we entered our first shutdown due to the coronavirus. Universities and high schools sent their students home and many important milestones were completely altered or couldn’t happen; graduation ceremonies, senior proms or simply finishing out your first year of college in a “normal” setting. Many have lost their jobs, their houses and the people they love due to the pandemic. 

Even in the midst of everything, I ask: so what is the silver lining to all of this? It has taken me almost a year to answer this question for myself. And the secret of the universe is… there simply isn’t one. There is no silver-lining. There is no good coming from all of this bad. At first I was hopeful, but with every terrible thing that happens, something even more terrifying is always around the corner. The initial shutdown was the first domino pushed in this series of unfortunate events, but when does it end? The second secret of the universe is that it doesn’t end. 

So, another question, where do we go from here? How do we cope? How do we make it better? From my experience, taking it one day at a time is the best option. 18-plus years in a non-COVID world is not going to make almost a year in COVID world feel entirely normal. We are still adjusting, it’s okay if you haven’t yet—I’m right there with you. Sometimes I get up to get my morning coffee and with one foot out of the door, I forget to put on my mask and have to turn back around to grab one. But at the same time, I’ll be watching TV and question why the characters aren’t wearing any masks. 

Being the person I am though, I refuse to accept my own no silver-lining theory. There needs to be balance in some way, shape or form for my brain to continue functioning. And I realized over this past school year that I mostly find my happiness in the little things. 

Instead of worrying about being able to go out with friends, travelling or putting on a full face of makeup, I try to find solace in many small feats, like only having to put makeup on my eyes, or not wanting to get up for class and then realizing I can just walk two feet to my desk and go online. Rather than working on relationships with other people, I can repair my relationship with myself. I urge you all to find your own versions of these little things. 

No, COVID is not ending anytime soon and nothing is ever going to go entirely back to normal. I think most of us realized that when we were only supposed to shut down for two weeks back in March, and now here we are. As we approach our one year anniversary with the coronavirus, I want to remind everyone that you are not alone, although it may seem like it sometimes. We are all experiencing this change a little differently, and things will become normal again, just a new normal, but remember: Rome wasn’t built in a day and apparently not a year either.