A collection of photos and screenshots documenting the virtual months in isolation

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Caleb Goss

First 'issue' of my life in quarantine. A collection of photos documenting the past two months in quarantine.

When quarantine started, I expected it to only last two weeks, then life would continue. I’d be back at school ready to finish the fourth quarter and become a senior. Little did I know, at the time, that I was very, very wrong. Over the course of the following weeks, I came across a blogger named Chloe Vlahos and her website. What brought me to her site was her project ‘clouds are 9m2’ where she composed pictures and screenshots she had taken throughout quarantine that summed up her first couple weeks in complete isolation. Feeling inspired, I decided I would do my own version of this and document the highs and lows of the past two months through my own pictures and memorabilia, and so, I present to you:

Letters From Quarantine

1.0 1.0 In the beginning, I felt connected to the world and those around me. The world had moved online and so, I followed suit. The internet was just a child when I was born. We’ve grown together. It wasn’t long before I realized self isolation would become a new normal. Everything was a new normal and with each new normal came its challenges. Learning moved to zoom, birthdays found a home in the form of celebratory drive bys whilst holding signs and screaming ‘HAPPY BIRTHDAY’ hysterically out the window. Much like the classroom, social gatherings were relegated to tiny screens in which each friend took turns sharing their bland, mundane week. It was new, but it was simple. All I could do was wait and hold myself over, trying my best to not let boredom win the day.

2.0 As quarantine went on, people were finding new ways to fill the void of what felt like an endless cycle. Hair was starting to grow out and at this point, it was all luck of the draw. Never ending instagram posts of peoples new due felt more like a game show. “You get a mullet! You get a mullet… You all get mullets”. I myself stayed away from scissors as long as possible as commitment is not one of my strong suits. Along with new haircuts and bad decisions, Lorde’s Pure Heroine and Kelsey Lu’s Blood became the soundtrack of my isolation. I deep dived into old albums and lived my best teen, in a coming of age movie, life from the comfort of my white duvet and navy blue blinds and of course, my MVP for this quarantine, dalgona coffee.

3.0 It was at this point, I knew, the boredom had hit. I was out of ideas for what to do and school, never failing, had begun to feel overwhelming. I hadn’t literally left the house since the quarantine began and was beginning to go stir crazy, and so, like most suburban soccer moms do when they need a break, I went for a walk. Needless to say, IT WAS AMAZING. I tied up my mask, situated my airpods and walked to the pond. Best decision I’ve made. All jokes aside, it brought me clarity. Though I kept my distance, I watched, in a non stalkerish way, as families walked their dogs, rode their bikes, fished. Watching people live their lives outside of the virtual world brought me peace and a temporary oasis from the constant cancel culture and obligations. It was a nice return of normalcy.

4.0 And now, the drama begins. As a result of everything moving online, it had seemed as though everyone in my life, including myself at times, was over video chats. I had begun feeling disconnected from everyone and so, I did what felt right. I began writing bad, melancholy poetry and quite honestly, I have no regrets. Now, I know what you’re thinking and the answer is yes, I am aware it is extremely melodramatic of me to compare myself to a crushed ant and unwanted kidney. I am also aware that that was exactly how I was feeling and so, like I said earlier, I have NO regrets. I feel like now more than ever, it’s important to let yourself feel whatever you’re feeling no matter how over the top because right now, it’s just you, there’s no one watching you except for maybe your two sisters, mom, dad and dog. It’s important to let yourself loose and work on the things you need to work on, but at the same time, not put pressure on yourself to figure out the meaning of life. An epidemic in no way is a productivity contest.

5.0 Because of feeling disconnected, my screen time inevitably went up as I replaced conversations between real people with the holy trinity: Instagram, Twitter and Youtube. TikTok is for the weak. As quarantine became a little more lenient, I had begun feeling optimistic about going to get an actual haircut and seeing my friends. I became clear in my findings that neither were a good idea, and so I got impatient and cut my own hair. Not only had I felt disconnected, I also had to cope as burn out ensued, and Although it came at possibly the worst time, I’m not worried that I will not get everything done because I do not have a choice. Example A, I am currently writing this at 12:06 a.m. Why? Because inspiration doesn’t wait, and neither do my grades. Thus, I am looking forward to summer, a time when literally nothing has changed except the fact that I would officially be a senior. That’s right, senior season baby!

There is no telling when this will end or if I will even get a picture perfect senior year, but I am holding out on hope that eventually, everything will return back to some normalcy, and that though I’ll have these pictures and screenshots in time to look back, I would have taken away something even greater: that I… am an extrovert 

*All photos were taken by me (March 23 – May 27)

Like Chloe’s, all screenshots of texts, google searches, notes, etc. are real and were not made for art or to tell a certain narrative.

Stay safe and STAY home

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