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The Stories

L.P., a teen in Hastings, NE

“The hardest part of the current situation with COVID-19 for me is how I am not able to see my friends and family like normal. This being my senior year, I was planning to be able to celebrate with all of my friends and family before I go off to college in the fall. Although this may still happen, it will definitely look different than I ever imagined it would.”

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S.T., 41, an echocardiographer in Waukesha, WI

“…Everyday at work we hear something new and new protocols are made. It’s necessary and hard to read everything to keep up with the changes. It is now the end of May. I don’t know if I see my field in healthcare ever being the same again…”

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S.S., 20, a student in Irvine, CA

“Another fascinating personal revelation I’ve had during quarantine surrounds my lack of hobbies. […] I am slightly saddened that I can’t take an interest in books, piano, or other hobbies I used to have like I did when I was a kid. There are also lots of new skills I am eager to learn such as skateboarding but I can’t find the energy to go out and get started and even when I do it’s inconsistent and half-hearted at best. I don’t know if this stems from exhaustion so much as a fear of failure I feel is much more present in my generation surrounding new things even at the young age of 20…”

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N.S., 62, an in-home caregiver in Sammamish, WA

“…My boyfriend and I have been in quarantine at home since the middle of March. The two of us have chosen to be extra cautious because he is Disabled. […] The crazy thing about that is that in some ways the “stay at home” part of this pandemic is not so difficult. Even so we have had to make some tough decisions and some life changes. The most difficult was putting on hold any assistance from outside Caregivers…”

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M.D., 19, a pre-med student in Long Grove, IL

“Having talked to my mom about how things are going in the hospital, I feel like it’s really surprising how fragile human health is, and it’s like an extra factor in the fear of the unknown. It shows you how much government itself values life and how problematic the healthcare system can be. Underlying issues with healthcare and government are more apparent, but perhaps with how some Americans have been responding, these issues are much, much more. America will do the most to try and stop a problem, but it’ll work harder to make sure there’s something to blame for it.”

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Life in Quarantine: Witnessing Global Pandemic is an initiative sponsored by the Poetic Media Lab and the Center for Spatial and Textual Analysis at Stanford University.

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