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Waiting in Quarantine

Maya Matheny ’23
Bioengineering Student

Swig, many know the iconic dorm. Old, moldy, and rowdy. My friends and I had heard the whispers that Covid-19 was nearing the Santa Clara University campus. A clock was ticking…. When would we get the email to be sent home? Stanford has already been dismissed for the quarter, but yet here we were waiting. The clock strikes 5 after 5 on April 13 (I think)…no email. That what the time it was supposed to be distributed, so maybe we were not getting sent home after all. 5 minutes later, “WE ARE GOING HOME!!”

Celebration ensued, everyone thought it would be a nice break to step away from school and refresh at home. Little did they know home would really be the new HOME. Bags were packed and temporary hugs began as people departed for the airport. Home was a wonderful place to be….

Waiting, months had passed. School was online for the rest of the year and people were counting the days in quarantine, in isolation. The reality and heaviness of what was occurring had set in and was burrowing holes into people’s lives. No more trips, no more joy, no more family. People were being infected, unlike anything that has been seen by many people.

Waiting, still at home, still trying to survive. People were now not only deteriorating from physical health but also mental health. Isolation was taking a toll months after. Santa Clara deemed it safer to complete fall quarter online. Good choice logistically, but a tough one for students who felt alone, scared, and fearful of the future. 

Today, we are still waiting. There have been so many horrible times in the past year. The waiting has destroyed so many things people were grasping onto. Today, May 12, 2021, one full year later we are still waiting. As a country, we see a slow improvement but we are not near where we should be. Through the waiting, introspectiveness has set in. Many people recognize the fractures in America, the biases that rule decisions, the lack of trust in governing bodies and medicine. I believe Covid-19 has ruined so many things, but in the wake of a disaster comes improvement. I stand now as a young 19-year-old woman seeking to not only improve myself but to help those around me because in waiting I have grown fonder of waiting with others. 

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