Quarantine forever changed how I look at life

Claire Loyd, Features Editor

Tiger King, whipped coffee, Outer Banks, and sidewalk chalk. If Gen Z hears those words together we immediately think back to quarantine. Shudder! Everyone reacted differently to the initial quarantine. Some were excited about the downtime, some were worried they would miss their spring semester, and most extroverts were less than thrilled. But did quarantine affect us for the better? 

We can all agree the time from March to July 2020 was memorable. Over quarantine, I think we all found ourselves trying new things or even going back to old childhood activities to safely keep us entertained. 

I think we can all say this generation is fast-paced. Tweets, Snapchats, Instagram notifications all filling our phones by the nanosecond. Constantly having plans with friends or get-togethers. But with quarantine, all of those “normals” seemed to rapidly decrease.

Over quarantine, instead of sending our friends dumb, little, pointless, pictures over Snapchat, we actually picked up the phone and FaceTimed them, or even met in an open parking lot and talked out of the backs of our cars.

We as a generation were forced to slow down. Take our time. See what life was like not at 100 miles per hour. We resorted to family walks, bike riding, painting. All things we never would have thought to do if we weren’t told to stay inside and not see anyone. 

I also believe everyone can say they came out of quarantine with a new hobby or even perfected the one they already had. I actually learned to crochet. I spent countless hours making baby hats and blankets in all of my newfound free time. It was very relaxing and is a  skill that I will now have for the rest of my life.

Many people learned a new skill to keep themselves active like kickboxing, distance swimming, or weight lifting, while some turned to more artsy projects like embroidery or sewing to keep them occupied. 

We had to learn how to “make our own fun” and not rely on others or other places to suffice our boredom. We are now able to fill our boredom and downtime at home all on our own. 

In my house, before quarantine struck it was rare to have a weekend not filled with sporting events, grocery shopping, seeing friends, etc. But now, we often find ourselves spending weekends together as a family in the backyard or all in the kitchen cooking together. 

Now with the Covid vaccines starting to be administered it feels as if we are on the final crawl to the Covid-free finish line. But one thing is for sure: quarantine changed how I look at life forever. If at this time next year I get to see my friends (not from six feet away), go into a grocery store and not Lysol everything I touch, or even just go back to school in a full classroom, I imagine these simple things will be so special because at one point in our lives, it was all we wanted to do.