Jayden Myers, Eighth-Grade Student at Thurmont Middle School
While people have been carefully navigating the daring dance with COVID-19, the world has been faced with lockdowns and restrictions.
In the resulting chaos, everyday life changed for us all. The stressful situation took a toll on those who were confined to their homes, sending some into a boredom frenzy and making others feel stir-crazy.
Although still relatively restricted, people have slowly adjusted over time and become very creative with what they do in their free time.
Many have stayed busy by engaging in hobbies, ranging from making face masks to writing stories. Others have committed to helping others during this time by supporting small businesses, supporting the food banks, providing for those who can’t go out, and much more. This has been beneficial to the community and its citizens in this time of need.
Besides supporting the community in various ways, there are other hobbies people have developed for fun. Personally, I’ve started writing more stories, drawing, painting, and trying new recipes. I also found a new hobby of crafting sticks into wands. It gives me a project to focus on that I have fun doing. Not only has this helped me cope with the sweeping lifestyle changes, but it’s helped me discover other interests as well.
Eighth graders Olivia Johnson of Western Heights Middle School in Washington County and Kendall Stuart, a home-schooled student, spoke of how they have occupied their time over the past year.
“I started writing and making TikToks more,” Johnson said. “That’s mainly what I’ve done to keep myself busy.” Although our conversation was brief, she went on to explain that there hadn’t been a whole lot she had become interested in, as writing takes up most of her time. This keeps her occupied during the time she isn’t in school.
Stuart committed time to personally enriching hobbies, “So far, I have started making YouTube videos, TikTok videos, and improving my makeup skills and dancing skills. I mainly focus on improving my makeup and dancing. I’m trying to work toward my goal of being a professional makeup artist.” Stuart agreed that these activities have kept her busy during her out-of-school free time.
Both have found pastimes that they enjoy and that keep them active.
While randomly asking members of the community about their hobbies, the most popular answers were arts and crafts, such as wreath-making; drawing; painting; making face masks for the community; pursuing outdoor activities; and spending more time with family. It seems people have started doing activities they did not have time for before the pandemic. I feel like people have realized what they were missing before it all started.
The quarantine has given people time to connect with their families and to have more free time to explore creative outlets. It also taught many a lesson like cherishing what they have before it’s too late, and to be grateful.
Similarly, new hobbies such as cooking, storytelling, making online videos, creating music, designing, and far more, have been chosen by people along the way to keep away the lockdown boredom.
As time progresses, many will likely stick with the new hobbies and skills they gained during this difficult time.