In Their Own Words

Reflection of the effects of the pandemic

The pandemic and has transformed me in ways that were mental, physical and emotional in nature.

To start, they only mentioned that COVID-19 is a virus that causes lung problems when I first learned about it in January 2020. Furthermore, Canadian health did not implement lockdown procedures on COVID until the beginning of March, and I recall that when I entered the school, the teachers informed me that the lockdown would only last for the March break.

However, no one had ever considered the possibility that we would skip two years of classes.

Additionally, everything had to be shut down by the government with the exception of the large supermarkets, and even those were restricted, giving the impression that you and your family were stuck inside your home.

Since there was nowhere to go and just two things you could do, social media or spending time with your family, it was initially impossible to avoid being bored. I put on more weight, lost my appetite, and had a horrible sleep pattern while trying to find methods to stay active, like walking alone outside, and buying home gym equipment.

In the end, I will always feel disappointment, despair, and grief because they were present from the beginning of the pandemic. Additionally, as I used to avoid going outside frequently during the pandemic, my sense of loneliness grew over time.

When the vaccination was first offered, I experienced a period of intense excitement and joy. I had the impression that I had entered a new world after exiting one completely. In the end, I was so pleased when the government declared the pandemic was finished and abolished all the limitations that I was unable to articulate my feelings.

This pandemic has altered my life and taught me to appreciate what I have as a result of the negative consequences it had on my health.

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Ibrahim Birkawi

John Fraser Secondary School – Grade 12
Mississauga, Ontario

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