- In what ways has pandemic life been positive for you? I’ve learned that I’m really, really okay with just…staying home most of the time. We’ve also saved money since we’re not going out, going to concerts, or even doing real shopping. There have been times I’ve popped out to pick up gifts for things like baby showers, and under normal circumstances, I undoubtedly would’ve come home with a few things for myself. Now I go in and out for what I need. Also, we had a baby! He doesn’t really have anything to do with the pandemic, but spending your days with a cute (and calm!) baby isn’t so bad.
- Where (and how often) did you get your pandemic news this past year? I look at NPR’s website daily for national news in general, and I sometimes listen to it in the car. Locally, I read our newspaper, which generally covers things like case counts, the death toll, and vaccination events. I have a subscription, but none of their coronavirus coverage is behind a paywall, which I think is a great thing to do to make it easier for people to stay informed.
- Where did you find unexpected comfort in these crazy twelve months? I don’t know. I think for me, I was already working from home, so on a day-to-day basis, it honestly doesn’t feel like anything ever changed, and like I said, I’m doing just fine with going out very little, so I don’t know that I’ve felt like I needed much comfort. I guess the one thing might just be what it’s like to be a new parent right now. I’m not alone in that–our nephew was born almost a year ago exactly–but I am more cautious. In general, we’re very careful about where we go and who we see, more so than most of our family. But especially a year in now, more and more parents, particularly women, have been sharing their stories, and I find myself identifying with those to a great deal.
- What are some little things you miss most about what used to be normal life? Concerts, for sure. Not having to remember a mask when I leave the house. But one of my biggest “this sucks” moments was when I was pregnant. We went out to grab some boxes to organize our closet and did a curbside pickup order, and I was like, “Under normal circumstances, we’d go out, do a little shopping, and get lunch somewhere.” I’ve certainly wanted to sit and enjoy a dinner out since, but that moment hit me the hardest in that regard. It was also earlier on. At this point, I’m used to it.
- What do you think life will be like twelve months from now? Mostly normal. I think mitigation efforts will stay in place in most areas for a while, at least until a large percentage of the population is vaccinated and demand for vaccines is lower, to where people can get appointments faster and easier. I’ve seen a few articles now addressing the fact that not everyone is going to be willing to get vaccinated and arguing that it doesn’t make sense to continue things like requiring masks for a segment of the population that doesn’t care. Personally, my husband and I both intend to get vaccinated, but currently, our eight-month-old can’t. I expect that in a year, he’ll be able to get vaccinated either because of an approved vaccine for him or just by virtue of being older. But because he can’t be vaccinated yet, we intend to still be very cautious, even after we are. I plan to keep an eye on case numbers and make decisions on things like parties on a case-by-case basis. I’m not exactly gonna go around asking everyone if they’ve been vaccinated, but if I know a lot of people have, I’ll be more willing to go.
From Friday 5.