by Caleb Mienk, 04/09/2020, Traverse City, MI

Middle School 6-8 Category

All I ever hear from my living room TV is the news spewing out facts about COVID-19. The death toll, rising. Amount of cases, rising. Nothing positive. All about the numbers and social distancing. I always hate to admit it, but I low-key don’t hate school that much. I miss all of my friends, I miss my music classes, and most of all I miss face-to-face teaching. This whole online learning thing is not my tea and crumpets. I need someone to explain to me the directions when I don’t understand them, rather than having to reread them over and over again. But the worst part of online learning is my parents constantly nagging me to get the whole week’s worth of work done in one day while also getting my chores done, housework is done, yard work is done, and sometimes make dinner too. My dad got laid off from his job, for the time being, so all of a sudden he has all of this time to make us do work. We have been raking up our leaves for about a week and a half now. Blisters from that. He decided to remodel one of our bathrooms. Blisters from that. Maybe it’s a sign that I need to do manual labor more often, or maybe it’s a sign that he might be working us too hard. Whatever it is, he’s not going to stop. At school, I’ve always had a hard time keeping up with all of the work assigned, but I usually manage to get it done. With me already having a hard time in school, with a teacher telling me what to do, I hope online learning will not destroy my well-being. 10, 20, maybe even 30 years from now when I adopt children of my own and they hear about the pandemic of Coronavirus, and they ask me what it was like, I don’t know how I will respond then. Maybe I will tell them that it was all sunshine and rainbows, to hide the fact that some people can’t follow simple instructions like, “Stay Home,” so I don’t destroy their faith in humanity. Maybe I will tell them the truth and say that it sucked and that they should never wish for something like that to ever happen again. Maybe I will just beat around the bush. Only time will tell.