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Day 23

Sayonara, senior year! Today is April 9.

I woke up at at 9:20 this morning and was greeted with an unpleasant surprise: for the second day in a row, my cat had thrown up in the hallway outside my bedroom. With a fair share of grumbling, I cleaned up the mess, washed my hands and headed to the kitchen for a bite to eat. I decided to heat up our leftover French toast and sausage, which brightened my mood a bit. I wasn’t awake enough to do much, so I simply enjoyed my meal while watching an episode of Batwoman.

Although they were littered with sad anecdotes and moments of pain, each one of them lifted my spirits through stories of human triumph. Even in the darkest of times, humanity still amazes me with the tremendous amount of love and compassion people possess.”

I checked my email throughout the day to make sure I hadn’t missed anything and checked in (a day late) with my Advanced Placement (AP) Psychology teacher. For some reason I’ve had a difficult time keeping track of what day it is this week, so I’ve been 24 hours late on two of the check-ins so far. I noticed a few deadlines for various pieces of college application-related material were fast approaching, so I scheduled a time to complete the paperwork and confirmations tomorrow. 

Around 12:30 p.m. I changed into normal clothing, grabbed a jacket and headed out the door to go walking. The weather was a little chilly and quite windy, so I didn’t want to be out of the house for too long. Nevertheless, I was gone for about an hour. I passed the time listening to a few different TED Talks Daily podcast episodes: “Why you should bring your whole self to work” by Dan Clay, “How the magic of kindness helped me survive the Holocaust” by Werner Reich, “What if a single human right could change the world?” by Kristen Wenz and “How technology has changed what it’s like to be deaf” by Rebecca Knill.

During my walk today, I captured a snapshot of gray sunlight flittering through a cottonwood tree in my front yard. Photo by Bailey Stover.

Each of the TED Talks centered around messages of kindness, acceptance, community and technological progress. Although they were littered with sad anecdotes and moments of pain, each one of them lifted my spirits through stories of human triumph. Even in the darkest of times, humanity still amazes me with the tremendous amount of love and compassion people possess.

I spent the better part of my afternoon sprawled out on the couch watching Netflix (most notably Chilling Adventures of Sabrina and Criminal Minds). I am beginning to feel a little bored with my same routine of TV, walking and more TV, though. Tomorrow I’m planning on, at the very least, writing down and planning out when and how I will study for each of my four upcoming AP exams. With Gov. Mike Parson’s order for K-12 schools state-wide to remain closed for the rest of the school year, I am lacking motivation to work now more than ever before. I hadn’t planned to attend major school functions, and, in all honesty, I am greatly enjoying the peace and relaxation this “break” is allowing me. Still, I miss the structure education provides, especially before I take tests that will determine what classes I have to take and how much money I will need to pay for my post-secondary education.

“In any given moment, we have two options: to step forward into growth, or to step back into safety. Growth must be chosen again and again; fear must be overcome again and again.”

Abraham Maslow

After dinner, my mom and I made time to “watch church” together. Today is Holy Thursday, a somber celebration for Catholics. Although we couldn’t physically be in church, we did enjoy spending time together listening to the priest’s homily and singing along to the music, some of which we know by heart. Easter is going to be a strange celebration this year, but we will find a way to make it lovely nonetheless. From who I talk to and what I do to where I go and how I practice my religion, COVID-19 has left no nook or cranny of who I am untouched. When this whole pandemic started, I don’t think I considered how it would impact every part of my life. Once all this ends, I am interested (and terrified) to see how the world adjusts. I can only hope it is for the better.

“In any given moment, we have two options: to step forward into growth, or to step back into safety. Growth must be chosen again and again; fear must be overcome again and again.” ― Abraham Maslow

How did you spend your 23rd day of social distancing? Let us know in the comments below.

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