2020 was the start of a global pandemic, but some also found the start of this year was the start of becoming more of who they want to be.
The routines that were pulled out from under us just a few short months ago created room to form new patterns and habits. Coronavirus is the same storm for all of us, but each of us are in a different boat.
Sharing these unique experiences allows us to learn from the people around us.
Freshman Jordan Dutcher used this rare time at home with all six of her family members to grow close by playing nightly games of Uno for ice cream.
“I learned how to enjoy the time I have with my sisters,” Dutcher said. “I have three younger sisters and we tend to have very different events occurring in our lives, but during all of the extra time, we were able to bond and become close and enjoy one another’s company.”
Even such a simple act of playing a card game each night, relationships were strengthened. As a freshman, Dutcher soaked up these moments even more before leaving for college.
As many others found, this time in the house also led to more time spent in the kitchen.
Junior Ela Alvarado found that she had a lot of extra time to bake and cook and wanted to share this with the world. Having started a YouTube channel the year before, this unexpected break gave her the space to decide what direction she wanted to take her channel in.
By making videos of creative recipes, Alvarado found an outlet to minister to people.
“It wasn’t just about growing my channel, it was more about showing people that they can take care of the temple God has given them while still enjoying their food! Even just doing it for my sisters was so incredibly rewarding.”
2020 has not been what we expected. Our plans have changed, we have learned to roll with the punches, no matter how hard we get knocked down. There is peace in knowing that God’s plan never is caught off guard.
Alvarado expressed how she was taught that it is vital to put God first in everything:
“I’ve realized (listening to the Spirit's voice is) the only way for him to edify your plans and for you to walk in God’s perfect path of righteousness.”
With more time to think, senior Taylor Berry started to turn thoughts into a company.
When school shut down in March, Berry found herself back at home reconnecting with her elementary school best friend. They connected over their shared love for fitness, nutrition, faith and being good students. This passion spurred ideas of a company with a mission to go the extra mile in all areas of life.
By starting theextramilelifestyle.com, Berry was able to have something to focus and put effort into each day.
“It’s easy to pick up your phone and scroll on TikTok for hours, but investing time and energy into something worthwhile but also fun is way more meaningful,” Berry said.
In creating this platform, Berry found that imperfections are okay.
Whether quarantine taught you to invest in relationships, let God be in control or to use your time wisely, each of us saw that we are not the Author of our stories.
Although this pandemic is a serious matter, and being home for months at a time was hard, it is often the hardest times where growth is found. It is during these times when people unite over hope — hope for health, hope for the return to jobs and hope for life to once again be normal. A new normal.