A bittersweet blessing of isolation


Christina Harisov

Junior Christina Harisov, enjoys some peaceful time in the lake at Twanoh state park in Union, Washington.

Junior Collin Shields, welcomes newborn niece and spends time hanging with her.

Throughout the past 9 months, our global lifestyle has dramatically changed and has been enforced to “quarantine” which is a prettier word basically subjecting everyone worldwide to lockdown within their household. Neurologically, a lack of stimulation causes the brain to misattribute internal thoughts and environmental emotions, so you can only imagine how these past 9 months have been for teenagers. 

The person I was at the beginning of everything regarding Corona has definitely changed. I am already a quiet and self kept person and I’ve become more mature, but not one to talk to as often as I used to. I don’t open up very well but enjoy my friends more than I used to. I know my value a lot better, how I should be treated by people, and my view on stuff around the world has changed. Self-isolating made me more introverted than I thought I’d be. I’m still outgoing and talkative when I’m with my friends, but it’s been more difficult to socially interact with anyone that I haven’t seen since we were in a normal school setting,” mentions senior Trent Nelson.

Our world is subsequent to a bubble surrounding a large outlet filled by social media. Society today determines people’s worth based on standards set by influencers. Psychologically, a lifestyle focused on technology creates a poor mentality especially for those with neurological developments still in action, like teenagers. Subjectively, Nelson’s daily routine revolves around a schedule following school, video games, and sleep. A lack of balance gave him a more reluctant envisioning of communicating amongst his peers in a social setting, leading him to advocate keeping a healthy mentality and remaining in contact with close friends and even those distant just to make things as “normal” as possible during the pandemic.

“I would describe myself as a caring, weird, and random person. I view myself as someone who cares about what others think, however, don’t like it when people take advantage of it. Amidst all of this surrounding Covid, I’m not the same person who I once was. I still do care about what others think, but I’m not letting people walk over me as much. Before, I did things to please others, now I try to include myself in it as well. Even in the chaotic mess our world has recently endured, I wouldn’t erase covid, because I think everything happens for a reason and I believe either everyone has become more of themselves or seen the reality of society. However, taking a glance at my character today I’ve become less social and talk to less people. Not only that, but I started procrastinating more and it’s hard to focus when it comes to school. Overall though, I have gotten closer to my family and had more time to focus on the smaller aspects of my life,” excerpts junior Christina Harisov.

Essentially, our world rotates quickly, so it’s important to stop and take a second to really look at who you are. Do you like yourself? Do you enjoy what you’re doing? How could you be a better version of yourself? Are you living for social standards or yourself? Ideally, we live to do what we aspire to and vision a perfect life for ourselves, but admittedly allow society to define our intuitions. Harisov has experienced a lot of change amid her past but instinctively chooses to push through while maintaining a positive mindset of making memories so that she enjoys every single moment, so why exist alongside the comradery through recycled air instead of breathing for yourself.

“I would say that I am not the same person I was before quarantine started. I have found out more things about myself due to being isolated that I would have never known before. I can confidently say that I have definitely done a lot of individual growth during the quarantine. I value myself more than anything else in the world. I don’t mean that in the sense that I’m in love with myself, but in that no one else is going to be there for me, through everything, except for me. This is why it’s important to develop a sense of purpose and self-love in life, but especially in quarantine. Most people, especially during these uncertain times, can suffer from mental illness, therefore hindering their ability to appreciate their individuality. The best advice I could give to anyone is to give yourself a little grace. It’s okay to not want to get out of bed and get ready for school. It’s okay to distance yourself from people when you want to. It’s completely okay to not feel like yourself for a few days. We judge ourselves so much, and with everything going on in the world, it should be okay to give ourselves a little grace every once and awhile,” expresses junior Collin Shields.

Unfortunately, the remains of self-doubt, self-criticism, and mental illness surround our society and depict unrealistic images that need to be portrayed to earn the label, “socially accepted.” Isolation is a vital issue among all of civilization specifically illuminating the distress of poor households, negative mentalities, and ridicule, but it can’t go unnoticed that while the rate of self-harm has significantly increased while in quarantine lockdown, it’s admirable that many fortunate teenagers and even adults have grown into the self-sufficient people our world is blessed with and makes you ponder the thought of self-induced disengagement could be the solvation of enlightenment of who we really are.