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Isolation from Family in Trying Times

By Hayley Farrell

The year of 2020 has brought forth changes for the lives of many people living in this world. We have all been affected by the coronavirus pandemic. The lives of many have been ripped from under them. I can say that personally I am grateful for the health of myself, my family, and my friends. Many of us are not lucky enough to have our health at this time. I feel that it is important to state that.

When this pandemic struck I was at first oblivious to the severity of it. My life had not changed right away. I was still working at my job as a cook and going to school. I was a supervisor of my own kitchen at my job and making $12 per hour. I was comfortable for sure. So I decided three days before the coronavirus stay-at-home-order hit to move to my own apartment  

The day after that decision I learned that the remaining spring semester at Point Park would go online. Two days following that I was laid off from my job and stuck in quarantine. I had a decent routine that kept me social and busy. I was left without that and in isolation. I had no proper income. I did find another job but for less pay, so I really do not have a decent income because essential businesses have modified hours 

Attending school online has proven to be more difficult than traditional classes. I try and keep my focus, but it is different when you are expected to work outside of a classroom setting. There are few things to keep me engaged in my work when I am at home. 

I am not coping well but not for any of the above reasons. Considering the fact that I have to work and I leave the house daily, I have been around a significant amount of people. And this has put me into a situation where I cannot physically be in the presence of my family.  

When I say family I mean my grandparents and my younger brother, my aunt and her two young children. I was raised from ages 12-18 by my grandparents. My brother was from ages 5-13. He still lives with them, but because they are elderly, I cannot go near them. As for my brother Michael, he was born with a rare heart condition. He is at more risk than others for developing Covid-19. My brother and I are close as I cared for him when he was a baby. I have not seen him in over a month. About two weeks ago I told him that I loved him through a window. 

My message to others during this time is please do not take for granted the small things in life that we are blessed with. Things like being healthy and sitting down to dinner with your loved ones. I learned that family is everything, and it’s so important to hold the significant people in your life close to you. I took a lot of things like these for granted, and I have many regrets about that during this time when we are under stay-at-home orders.

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