Over the last few months, the Coronavirus has impacted daily life in an innumerable number of ways. Despite the current state of the world, there are a few things that I have grown to appreciate even more since the onset of the pandemic.
Nature and Being Outside
Anyone who has been following my content for a while should get the impression that I prefer the indoors. While I love watching television and playing video games, even Animal Crossingis boring after a while (slowly approaching 400 hours played). Summer also means socially distanced BBQs and generally, more time outside. There’s a sense of community, especially during this time. It’s a powerful reminder that we must persevere together.
My dad recently purchased an outdoor patio table citing it as an investment for today and a post-COVID tomorrow. New Jersey currently allows for socially distanced hiking in small groups. So I went with a few friends and spent some time on a local trail. While the mosquito bites were unwelcome, the opportunity to vary my schedule with something new was a great experience. I am not sure how long it will last past the summer, but various family gardening projects have been keeping me busy. I am currently growing cucumbers. I admit that removing weeds is considerably easier virtually, compared to real life.
By now you’ve likely had your fill of Zoom calls and Netflix. Imagine if we did not have access to any of these modern luxuries? I am writing this post in the aftermath of Hurricane Isaias, a recent tropical storm that affected the east coast. This event was particularly special because all of the houses on my street lost power for three days. Wheelchair users around the world know how dangerous outages can be. In addition to charging commonplace things like cell phones and toothbrushes, wheelchairs and other powered adaptive equipment must be charged. Imagine if the entire duration of quarantine was this way. How much more isolated we would feel? The LED headlights on my Edge 3 Electric Wheelchair were very helpful in providing illumination at night.
I was fortunate to leave my previous job and began working at my current job within the first few months of quarantine. The flexibility of a hybrid work environment allows me to work from home when needed, while still coming into the office from time to time. The financial effects of unemployment are obvious, but the social factors are, arguably, more impactful. My relationships with coworkers are in their infancy, but their presence represents a group of people who are doing their best to make the most of a bad situation, which brings me a measure of peace. To those of you without a job at the moment, I offer my well wishes and reminders to persevere and stay vigilant.
Family and Friends
All the previous points address the underlying need for community, none more directly than the need to be with friends and family during this time. Like many of you, the first weeks of quarantine were a whirlwind of emotions that could not be quelled. It was not until a close friend invited me to a Zoom call with a few other acquaintances that my spirits slowly turned around. We talked every day for three months and continue to talk a few times a week to this day. As things in certain parts of the East Coast begin to open up, those conversations remain my favorite memories of quarantine. For all of the bad that this pandemic has brought, the opportunity to strengthen relationships with friends and family was an unforeseen silver lining. Something fun to do for your community affected by COVID-19 is to record fun videos for them to watch when they get better. Remember to stay positive and wash your hands.
About Tim Shin: Tim lives in River Vale, NJ. He enjoys food, fashion, music and television. Click here to learn more about Tim.