It’s been a long year since March 13th, 2020. A long, tiring, mentally challenging, socially distanced year. Normally, March 13th would be like any other day, no national holidays or significant events. Students would be eagerly awaiting Spring Break, and after that the last quarter of the year. There would be the DP art show to look forward to, a theatre production, prom, and so much more. Seniors would be enjoying their last months of high school. People everywhere in Indianapolis would be out and about, enjoying the warmer weather after the harsh winter. However, for Hoosiers, this represents the day life changed in a way we never could have imagined.
Businesses everywhere had to shut down, and they struggled to every barely survive. Many even had to shut down.
School suddenly came to a stop, and neither teachers nor students knew what to do. In the blink of an eye, we were suddenly thrust into unfamiliar territory for all. We had to get used to and try to learn with an unfamiliar system, if we could. Teachers had to translate all of their work to the digital interface and try and make it engaging.
“At first it was this scary unknown thing that I thought was only going to last a couple of months (even though a couple of months seemed impossible at the time).” Miss Myers, a theatre teacher at Shortridge says. “Now I’m just exhausted. I’m angry that this happened, and that I lost the most important thing in the world to me, which is theatre.“ Many students seem to agree with this sentiment, feeling burnt out after all this time.
“My attitude towards the pandemic has changed since the start. At the beginning, I was scared to leave my house. Being cautious of what I touch, who I’m around, and just regular things that you’d look out for when a pandemic arises…” A Shortridge Junior says.
Students have differing opinions on virtual learning and the pandemic. While some are thriving on it, others are suffering.
“My attitude was improving until this pandemic and school year hit,” says Soriaya Malave, a Freshman at Shortridge. “I am trying to stay positive, but this school year has been terrible. This has been the absolute worst year of school I have ever had.”
On the other hand, some people have gotten used to this “new normal”, and some have even benefited from it.
“At first I hated the pandemic but now I´ve just gotten used to it.” A Freshman says.
“I am grateful for all of the time I have been forced to spend on my own. It has helped me remember what makes me happy, and gives me peace.” Mr. Hankins, an art teacher at Shortridge, says.
Some people had their opinions switch as time went on.
“Originally I found the pandemic like a blessing, I finally got a break, but genuinely I miss the normal I previously had.” A Shortridge Junior says. “My life has gradually gotten worse since March, I’ve lost more than I gained.”
“I liked it at first because I needed a break from school and people, now I hate it because I can’t go out and experience things when I want.” Another Junior says.
With everything that’s happened, whether good or bad, I think we can agree with Shortridge Junior Makayla Person when she says:
“I want this pandemic to be over.”
More to come in later stories!