COLUMN: Quarantine is not THAT bad…

Listen: don’t get me wrong, this whole COVID-19 pandemic is a horrible situation that one would simply never imagine to occur in their lifetime. However, it is impossible to get through this tough situation without a positive outlook, if you can find one. Luckily, you have me.

If you know me (or have seen me strolling down the beautiful East halls), you know that I show up to school in what people consider pajama attire. Basically, my morning routine consists of rolling out of bed, opening my closet door, and grabbing the first pair of sweatpants and sweatshirt that I see, all while my lights are off. Although this attire could project a sense of laziness on me, I truly believe that one can concentrate better and learn more while being in the most comfortable clothes possible. Now that school is taking place online, every student has the option of completing their school work in pajamas and I certainly recommend doing so. Working in comfortable clothes allows individuals to direct their attention to their work rather than to the uncomfortable, tight, confined feeling that accompanies leggings, jeans or similar types of basic attire. Not only do students have the opportunity to “attend” school in his or her pajamas, one can now complete assignments from the comfort of his or her own bed. Don’t you like it? Isn’t it easier to perform well in school (or online) without worrying about what other people think of your attire? Take advantage of this opportunity, as the presence of leggings, jeans, and the cold, metal seats that consume East will soon be found in our daily lives once again.

Ask yourself this: how many hours of sleep did you receive on a typical school night before the world exploded with COVID-19? Let me guess: probably not a lot. My typical school morning consisted of me continuously smacking the snooze button on FIVE, yes five, of my set alarms until the sixth started blaring “Beez In the Trap” by Nicki Minaj—the only song that can truly wake me up at that hour. This type of morning, for lack of a better word, sucks. Waking up to the sheer darkness that consumes the entire sky is not a source of motivation to start off the day. Peculiarly, the first day of online school, was the first school day where I woke up to pure sunlight. Wow, what an unusual sight that was. Not only does waking up to actual sunlight provide a welcoming and positive start to the day, but it regulates the body’s biological clock which can lead to a healthier body and a better night sleep. Though online school is not the ideal situation for students and teachers, it is an opportunity for everyone to return to their original selves before high school sleep deprivation kicked in. Now, students and teachers are not confined to a fixed schedule that requires their presence in school before 7:30 a.m. Once again, take advantage of this opportunity. Sleep an extra hour, or an extra five hours, or 23—in a perfect world.

Although online school is not a perfect system, the way students approach it is representative of the student that they truly are. The adaptation to online school, and essentially independent learning, can be used to prepare students for their upcoming encounters if they chose to further pursue their academic career in college. This system can also provide preparation for experiences beyond college, like work. Online school practically forces students to advocate for themselves and develop a strong trust in their own abilities.

How many times has your mom asked you to clean your closet? How many of those times did you actually do it? Now, for better or for worse, you have the time to clean your closet, or pursue any activity that you normally put off due to a lack of time. Make the best out of these horrible circumstances. Focus on self-care, hang out with your family, become a workout beast. The world is your oyster. Remember, this is not a corona-cation. This is serious, and to protect our community, country, and our world, we must remain home. Stop being selfish and remember that the world is much bigger than yourself. We could have been asked to do a much harder, more strenuous task in order to protect each other. Staying home is not too much to ask.