Behind the Mask: Reflections on Covid

I don’t believe that anyone living in our modern society at this point in time can earnestly and truthfully say that COVID did not have an impact on their lives.

Whether directly through a loved one or indirectly through the cancellation of a favorite pastime, the worldwide pandemic has impacted us all in one way or another. For some, this past year has served as a good time to reflect upon oneself and renew life goals, whether that be in terms of health, skills, bad habits, personal flaws or the like. Looking past the shows that we got the opportunity to binge watch on Netflix and the classes that we got to wear pajama pants to every day, this “gap” year from life was arguably one of the most influential and much needed events to have come out of 2020. I’m sure that many of us look back at our former selves before this pandemic and see someone that we don’t imagine ourselves to have been, whether we like it or not. 

A great deal of thought goes into our everyday actions, leaving little time for us to reflect on those actions. Our school days have gone by like clockwork, moving from class to class at the monotone sounding of the bell. All of our mental capacity is consumed with information that we are expected to know, but only retain until test day. Our after-school time is filled with extracurricular activities and hanging out with friends. Again and again. Over and over, the cycle repeats itself. Not unlike a robot, we are tasked with repeating the same actions every day. Uniformly. Homogeneously. Consistently. Constantly.

It comes as a surprise to no one that this takes a significant toll on our mental health. We start to engulf ourselves with these events, to the point where we become a part of these events. So much so that when these events are alteredーor worse, cancelledーthe very essence of our existence is thrown up in the air. This is why reflection is such an important part of our lives, and I think we can all agree that COVID, however badly it impacted each of us, collectively gave us the opportunity to reflect on what really matters, and to change our lives for the better.