Preface: In March 2020, the TRIP@WTHS'20 session was cut short by the COVID-19 pandemic. Although the program ended early, our students continued to pursue their interests, to grow, and to adapt. In July, we invited the TRIP@WTHS'20 alumni to reflect on how they spent their time in quarantine. This is Anjali's story.
I found new hobbies, learned new skills..., became closer with my friends, and most importantly, learned that there’s always a way to do something, you just have to be passionate about it.
For the past four months I’ve been quarantined in my house, much like everyone else, but I definitely tried to make the best of it.
When quarantine first began, I was excited to leave school and have an early summer, but little did I know that with everything CLOSED and nothing to do, it wouldn’t be that much fun. In the beginning, I spent most of my time in online school and preparing for AP exams (even though I had no clue what the format would be like), but after quickly finishing my assignments in the morning, I found that for the rest of my day, I wasn’t being productive. It was about one week into quarantine when I got bored of wasting my afternoons and started to find new hobbies. I started doing at-home workouts (because my gym closed), cleaned the house, and spent A LOT of time with my family. We went on so many hikes/walks and discovered new nearby trails! With my brother I looked for new recipes to cook each night for dinner while we also spent time watching Netflix shows/movies together, playing board games, and sharing stories while sitting on the deck outside making smores. Even though I wasn’t able to go out, visit all my friends/family, or have a normal school year, I continued to keep in touch with everyone using Facetime and social media--spending time with my family definitely made quarantine fun!
Besides spending time with my family, I continued with extracurricular activities, which is one of the big reasons why quarantine wasn’t terrible. I began taking virtual dance classes and meeting online with the Junior Achievement (JA) mentors and company members. Our company qualified for the national competition and I was even chosen to attend the virtual competition! With both dance and JA being successful online, I decided to continue with Sweatshirts to Scrubs. The original plan was to hold a summer camp in-person, but when the pandemic occurred, I didn’t know if I should wait it out, continue with an in-person camp, cancel it altogether, or come up with an alternative solution. I ultimately decided to hold it virtually, which created new challenges. I wanted to expand Sweatshirts to Scrubs across states because of this virtual platform, and currently, we have kids from 6 different states signed up!
Looking back to how I felt about quarantine when it first started to now, I can confidently say that it wasn’t as bad as I had thought it would be. Although I wish I could’ve seen my friends and had a normal school year, there were still a lot of benefits to it. Not only did my family grow together and become more connected, I had a lot of personal growth. I found new hobbies, learned new skills such as learning how to adapt to change, became closer with my friends, and most importantly, learned that there’s always a way to do something, you just have to be passionate about it.