In Their Own Words

Finding joy in the little things

The first thing that comes to my mind of how COVID-19 affected me is that I’ve taken the simplest things in life for granted. For instance, going outside when the weather is perfect or running a quick errand or even being social. So, for me not being able to do “normal” things has been a shock and it’s been a hard curve to adjust to.

I’ve also had to face multiple challenges such as restricted movement, social isolation, lifestyle changes, extreme boredom and a lack of clarity for my future. I am part of a large family where we would hold gatherings every two weeks to celebrate the little things in life, spending time seeing friends, family and close ones. My boisterous family loves to socialize as we are very close since my parents came to Canada as refugees fleeing civil war. Being unable to see my family like I have taken for granted really impacted me and drove a wedge through my family closeness.

I also had to overcome self-isolation. I have younger and older people living with me and when a few of them caught the virus, I had to self-isolate for 14 days at home. It was a dreadful experience and I felt like I was on house arrest. My lifestyle changes were the most difficult part of the pandemic that I needed to get used to. However, it wasn’t all doom and gloom. I learned to adapt and find joy in the small things. With online school, I took advantage of that small slot of time that I had and woke up earlier, ate a nutritious breakfast, read a book called The Art of War (I highly recommend it), meditated, and then started online school on Zoom.

The good came with the bad. I adapted to use my time effectively and learn healthy habits while staying at home. Boredom had also kicked in quite a bit, but I had to learn to create myself an indoor gym in my basement to do exercises.

COVID-19 was a life event, and I will always remember it. I am curious to see how it will play out in the future. COVID-19 made me resilient, and I hope to adapt to the world’s “new normal.”

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Muaad Seiyad

Centennial College – First Year Student
Toronto, Ontario

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