Covid 19 is a term we did not know this time last year. I wonder what we would have guessed it meant if someone had shared the term with us. It has come to dominate our lives. I have 3 teenage children one of whom I live with and two overseas. Communication can be challenging as until last summer we were so used to living as a family of 5. Partly because I have teenagers of my own and remember the challenges of my own teenage years, I wanted to get a teenager’s perspective on Coronavirus. Huge thanks to Em a teenage blogger for sharing her feelings and thoughts in this guest post.
A teenager’s perspective on Coronavirus
“The Coronavirus situation is one that affects everyone. There is no escaping the impacts and everyone has their own unique experience of it. Teenagers are no exception to this. I feel this situation is one that you must look for positives in as otherwise it can impact your mental health dramatically.
I feel like we have lived a year within a month. There have been so many changes that it isn’t a surprise people are struggling to cope. The number of deaths is shocking and I can’t get my head around how quickly this has developed!
In December, if you were to tell me I wouldn’t be sitting my exams, I would have laughed. I am currently in my last year of sixth-form studying Maths, Geography and Business, and after a year and a half of work, I will not be sitting my exams. Instead, I am going to get a grade based on predictions and teacher judgement. It was a massive shock to hear that news and that I wouldn’t have to return to school. It feels incredibly rushed as, all of a sudden, I have finished school forever. No leavers day, no prom, no goodbye.
I am happy that I don’t have to sit my exams, relieving a lot of stress, but I am equally as annoyed as I don’t have the chance to prove I could do better. It doesn’t feel like I deserve the grade. I also feel like I have missed out a lot like revising, the build-up etc. These are things I remember about my GCSE’s and how amazing it was for my whole year group to walk out of that final exam together.
Forgetting school, I am also worried about a lot of other things. The Coronavirus has meant that I fear the outdoors. I worry about leaving the house and going to the shops. The fear is irrational, but it is there nevertheless. I worry about the health of people I don’t even know as this virus is ruthless. This stress has caused sleepless nights. I have also been furloughed. As I am only 17, I make £4.35 an hour and am contracted for 5 hours a week. I work a lot more than that every weekend, but as it isn’t in my contract, I don’t get that money. I am now on £18 a week which I am very grateful for but think it should be put to a worker who needs it more.
As I mentioned, it is important to keep a positive attitude, otherwise, it can become unhealthy. I am grateful for many things and being distant from so much has made me appreciate the little things more.
I have noticed less food waste in my home. We appreciate the food we eat more and are more mindful when buying produce now. My family also sit around the table together now, and we enjoy our meals together. I feel this virus, despite how horrible it is, has brought the community together. I see people buying shopping for those in need, distant families connecting on video calls and an appreciation for the NHS like never before.
I have had time to work on myself and do things I have wanted to do for a while. It has made me more grateful for going out, and I will endeavour to not put off plans anymore. It has also allowed me to start blogging. I have found a love for writing, and I am grateful for the opportunities blogging has brought me so far. I have met so many amazing people.
I have found many things challenging. I hate not seeing my family and my friends. I miss having a routine, a job and surprisingly, going to school! Something that I have found helpful is making a checklist of things to do during the day or week. It keeps me productive and happy, plus I can keep track of things that need to be done. The isolation period we are in will be the longest time off I ever have off, so I want to make the most of it.
As part of a teenager’s perspective on Coronavirus, I am sharing a few ways you can keep happy during these challenging times!
1) Make a list of all the things you want to do once the lockdown has been lifted – I like looking forward to the future as it keeps me hopeful. I already have created a few plans, so I have something to look forward to.
2) Do a form of exercise – I don’t like going outside at the moment so running is off the table. Instead, I enjoy doing a home workout using an app. I also enjoy yoga, as this is relaxing and keeps me happy. It also keeps you in shape.
3) Learn a new skill – I have found a love for baking. I enjoy trying out recipes and creating new ones. I love to share them on my blog for others to try. Blogging is another passion I have discovered recently.
4) Have a pamper night – Self-care is really important while self-isolating. Whether you have a long bath with a face mask or have a movie marathon, looking after yourself is crucial. It keeps you happy, it is fun and gives you something to do!
5) Dive into a book – Something I have seen many people turning to is reading. Reading is relaxing and allows you to escape to a different world.
I think the coronavirus situation is devastating, and one that will impact the future dramatically. I hope that people learn from it and continue to be as community orientated as they are currently. I hope that people care about others more and understand that every job is important whether you are on the NHS frontline or are stacking the shelves. It will be interesting to see how the world recovers from this and what changes will be made!”
I would love to know what you think about a teenager’s perspective on Coronavirus so please do leave a comment.