Featured Entries

Each week, we post a few journal entries that participants have given us permission to share anonymously.

In your journal, you can write whatever you want, however you want. When we feature posts, we want to protect confidentiality. Here's our policy:

  • We won't post any photos that include faces (even with masks!) or names.
  • We won't post audio that includes names or more than one voice.
  • We might edit text entries slightly to remove proper names – but this won't change anything you've written in your journal.
Think about the people closest to you. Tell us about how the coronavirus has affected them, and their life.

I have lost one of my uncle because of covid-19 and it was pretty devastating. Everyone in my family was devastated because he was the person who applied for my family and my aunt family to come to USA. Because of him we are living a better life. He was also the most respected person everywhere.

Additional Material

Back in March 2020, I created this fictitious magazine cover for a hypothetical publication called "Covid Monthly" and shared it with my friends as a joke. At the time, I included the issue month of September. It seemed impossible in March 2020 that the pandemic could last until September of 2020, and it was meant to be humorous that it could go on for that long. As we know now, it got much worse in September 2020, and here we are now in September 2021, still trying to fight that hideous monster.

¿De que manera el coronavirus le está afectando su vida en este momento? Cuéntenos sus experiencias, sensaciones/emociones, y pensamientos.

Ya ha pasado un año y seis meses desde que se decretó el aislamiento social, preventivo y obligatorio (ASPO) por el Covid 19. Y si bien esa fase ya ha finalizado, aún debemos guardar distancia entre ciudadanos. Es difícil vivir con la incertidumbre del futuro, que de por sí es desconocido, pero ahora todo se ha complicado más con un virus dando vueltas.

Mi familia y yo ya nos vacunamos, así que eso nos da una sensación de tranquilidad, pero yo no puedo evitar pensar en quienes no desean hacerlo. Les entiendo, tienen miedo o falta de información, pero a la vez me perturba que eso les dañe o dañe a terceros.

Hay tantas cosas que extraño de antes de la pandemia: ir en un colectivo lleno de gente sin mascarillas, tomarme un café con un amigo en una confitería pequeña, con las mesas muy cerca una de la otra, entrar en un lugar sin hacer fila ni que te tomen la temperatura, asistir a las clases de la universidad en salones enormes y colmados de personas, etc. Son cosas a las que no les daba importancia e incluso algunas me disgustaban e incomodaban ¡Qué irónico!

Poco a poco las cosas van tomando un nuevo rumbo y quizás algunas costumbres muy nuestras, como los afectuosos saludos de beso en la mejilla, sean algo menos común en el futuro. O puede que sea algo que realmente se extrañe y se reinstale con más fuerza. No lo sé.

How is the coronavirus pandemic affecting your life right now? Tell us about your experiences, feelings, and thoughts.

- i haven't made an entry in a while because each week felt the same -- but last week me and my fiancé both got sick, and we were really really worried

... the area I'm in is pretty rural ... people don't really wear masks, and it's kind of concerning

... we both have our first shot but haven't been able to have our second one, which was scheduled for the week we got sick

... I don't know who's vaccinated and who just doesn't care

Would you describe yourself as someone who’s flourishing at this point in your life? Why or why not? If this has changed during the pandemic, talk about what’s changed.

I think I was actually flourishing a but more before the lockdown ended. Now we're in this weird in between place where vaccines haven't gotten us the freedom we wanted but some people are acting like it did.

How is the coronavirus pandemic affecting your life right now? Tell us about your experiences, feelings, and thoughts.

Well I can't believe we are leaving summer behind and fall is well underway. I went to the seawall and walked this past week. I love the ocean. It was windy and there were small waves. It helps me to forget about the pandemic for a brief time. Today I am heading out to White Rock to meet some friends and will again be by the water.. So glad I can socialize more and not be so isolated. Today for the first time i have to use my vaccine passport to go for lunch in a restaurant. It came into effect a week ago and I'm glad … because they are screening for unvaccinated people, it allows the majority to do more things and society doesn't have to shut down now that our case counts are rising. Its a good thing.

Estamos viviendo con restricciones de movimiento y contacto social. Háblenos de cualquier restrición que le está impactado su diario vivir.

Sinto que as restrições de contato social me deixaram desacostumada com interações cara a cara. Nunca fui uma pessoa muito sociável, tenho perfil mais introvertido, mas sinto falta de estar com amigos e às vezes sinto que não sei mais interagir naturalmente com as pessoas sem a mediação de um dispositivo eletrônico, principalmente com desconhecidos. O pior momento com relação às restrições sociais foi durante a quarentena, no ano passado, quando vivi dois lutos sem poder sair de casa, espairecer, estar com familiares e amigos... Foi muito difícil e doloroso ficar isolada nessas circunstâncias.

How is the coronavirus pandemic affecting your life right now? Tell us about your experiences, feelings, and thoughts.

This week has been fairly quiet, though there has been some students at my online university has posted on our school 'blackboard' had friends/family either test positive for coronavirus or has passed away. I do get a little bit depressed thinking of all those have had lost loved ones from covid. I cannot fathom what they are going through.

Additional Material

Big kiddo's 2nd (annual?) outdoor movie screening birthday party. Projector, collapsible screen, temporary subscription to Disney Plus to watch the movie of choice ("Luca"), lemonade, cupcakes, 7 packages of microwave popcorn served with a ladle in little red and white striped boxes, piñata from Target filled with all sorts of crap (before sundown), darkness. Boom. She LOVED it. When the movie ended early, we turned the whole thing into a dance party, and the kids had a blast.

How is the coronavirus pandemic affecting your life right now? Tell us about your experiences, feelings, and thoughts.

Last year the New Mexico state fair was not held due to the pandemic

This year the state fair returned

I went with my friends who adore the state fair

Everyone attending had to show proof of vaccinations

it was the first time I had to show my vaccination card

Once we got there it was a relief to know that everyone (except the children) had gotten their vaccinations

People still wore masks when walking around in buildings and also outside

But what a relief to be able to walk around freely

It felt like a vision of a post-Covid world

¿Usted siente que las personas en su comunidad se están apoyando mutualmente durante la pandemia del coronavirus? Si es así, cuéntenos un poco acerca de eso, y tal vez pueda dar algunos ejemplos.

Yo creo que si, a pesar de la epidemia, conozco experiencias de personas, yo misma, que apoyaron emocionalmente a compañeros con COVID, mediante llamadas, mensajes, o llevando algo que necesitaran a su casa. También muchos de nosotros nos apoyamos difundiendo recomendaciones para no contagiarnos o bien remedios que supuestamente podrían ayudar sobretodo infusiones.

Let's talk about exercise. Has the pandemic affected whether or how you exercise? If so, how?

To be honest I have always struggled to maintain a regular exercise habit. I played roller derby for 6 years and that was the most regular exercise I have gotten, and the most fit I have ever been. But since COVID contact sports have been put on hold and roller derby is still unavailable. I have been riding my bike more regularly, commuting to work and taking longer scenic rides on weekends. When the pandemic started it felt like the safest form of exercising. It still does. I also feel safer going on rides with others since it is outdoors and there is a lot of wind resistance when you ride where I live.

¿De que manera el coronavirus le está afectando su vida en este momento? Cuéntenos sus experiencias, sensaciones/emociones, y pensamientos.

El pasado sábado fue cumpleaños de mi padre, llego a 81 años, dado el COVID19 habíamos suspendido las fiestas, sin embargo, mi padre, quien ha tenido un año muy difícil por distintas afecciones, deseaba hacer una celebración por lo que mis hermanos y yo pensamos en un pastel al que invitaríamos a muy pocas personas, al final nos reunimos alrededor de 15 personas. Cuidamos que mi padre trajera siempre cubrebocas, por su avanzada edad y estado delicado, sin embargo, nosotros mismos y mis familiares, nos olvidamos de él, dado que la casa es espaciosa, llego un momento en que sentí angustia de no haberles dicho a mi familia que debimos usar cubrebocas, sin embargo, mi yo interno me decía que todo estaría bien, que había sana distancia y al parecer todos estábamos sanos. Afortunadamente todos estamos bien, pero creo que al estar junto con la familia extensa después de tantos tiempo separados, nos gana el gusto y el afecto sobre el temor de contagiarnos., las estadística de que los contagios van a la baja y que la mayor parte estamos vacunados creo que también han sido factores que han aligerado el temor al COVID.

How is the coronavirus pandemic affecting your life right now? Tell us about your experiences, feelings, and thoughts.

- I have felt extremely overwhelmed and depressed by the rise in cases as result of the delta variant, as someone who works in education

- the most recent UN climate report was really dire

- I personally don't feel like I have any control or agency over making things better

Talk about what helps you feel connected to others during the coronavirus pandemic, and what makes you feel more alone.

I've noticed that during the Pandemic, conversations with friends have become longer and more intimate. Maybe because we know that we won't be seeing each other any time soon.

Two friends came out of the woodwork and have become good friends.

Will this continue if the Pandemic ever ends?

Many of us have experienced restrictions on movement and social contact during the pandemic. Talk about any restrictions that have especially affected you.

- What I would say to young people is that I hope we've learned something from this COVID-19 situation

- to plan ahead, to think on their feet when they're confronted with a situation

- COVID-19 has given an opportunity to confront and reflect on our lives, for young people too

- maybe when this is over they'll have an opportunity to see life in a new light, become more responsible, become better people

During the pandemic, has anything changed in how you get food, prepare it, or eat it?

Food has become more casual. There seems to be less desire to spend as much time preparing meals. I guess my enthusiasm has diminished. One upside however is that I am making more bread than usual and sharing it with family and friends. I have made bread for years, the traditional way, a bowl to mix the ingredients in and kneading and shaping by hand. No mixer or bread machine. I started years ago after reading an article on stress and how bread making was recommended to women in Britain in WWII as a way to reduce stress during the blitz. It is a good stress reliever, especially the kneading and punching of the dough. The end result is rewarding and there is nothing better than fresh bread out of the oven. I have even got grandkids over to help on occasion. They love to punch the air bubbles out and shape it into loafs and often saying “take this Covid!” as they pound the dough. Good therapy with a good result.

How is the coronavirus pandemic affecting your life right now? Tell us about your experiences, feelings, and thoughts.

My office coworkers and I are at different comfort levels. They wanted to have a meeting at a restaurant, and I'm not ready to be eating in crowds given the latest caseloads. It was awkward to tell them I wasn't coming, but they were very understanding and said we'd all get takeout next time.

I live in a rural, non-COVID-caring area, but there has been an uptick of masks at the grocery store. Probably about 40% are wearing them, which is muuuch higher than it has been.

How is the coronavirus pandemic affecting your life right now? Tell us about your experiences, feelings, and thoughts.

Another Rosh Hashana at home with just the three of us, but this year we couldn’t blame it all on Covid—lack of planning was also to blame. We both are working from home is great, but it has us both running a bit ragged and somehow despite having saved all this commuting time, there is still no time to think and plan. I suspect the general state of alert and Covid anxiety contributes too, but it seems like the days pass by so fast and suddenly POOF there’s a holiday we forgot to make plans for. Still, it was nice to bake a couple of rounds challahs, one for us and one for a neighbor who also celebrates. My matzo ball soup isn’t as good as my mother in law’s but it was still tasty and no one complained!

¿Cuál es un obstáculo que usted ha encarado durante la última semana? ¿Cómo lo ha enfrentado?

Durante a última semana tive notícias da minha madrinha hospitalizada com covid 19, a família inteira teve que reorganizar a rotina para da suporte a ela e ao marido que são idosos. É muito triste acompanhar o caminho que a doença causa nas pessoas. Aqui no Rio as UTIs estão lotadas de idosos, grupo que já completou a vacinação mas por motivos de idade e imunidade diminuída nesse grupo, estão sofrendo com a variante delta.

Talk about whatever else is on your mind today.

Apropo of nothing to do with covid, I'm posting a cute kitty photo today--a little feral gentleman who helped me write an essay last week. Because in the middle of all this death and dying and incessant fighting and horrible politics of the US it's good to take a break and just enjoy the peace and calm of a kitty cat!

¿Tiene alguna preocupación acerca del impacto de la pandemia en los niños en el largo plazo, sean niños en su vida o los niños de forma general? Si es así, háblenos de una o dos de sus mayores preocupaciones.

Mi preocupación es que sean afectados en su desarrollo. Pero eso no lo sabremos hasta que pase el tiempo y se hagan más estudios.

Has the pandemic affected the way you get medical care, either for routine check-ups or for more serious health concerns?

Actually this week there were several relatively minor issues that my husband and I both probably would have checked out (sooner) were it not for the pandemic. We are both by coincidence having some tooth issues, and we both see dentists in the city—very convenient when we work in the office during the week, but highly inconvenient from our suburban home. He lived with a massive toothache for almost a week before giving up and going in and will have to go back next week for a procedure; I’ve just noticed an implant is loose and will need to get it tightened up next week. It would be 30 minutes off my life from the office, but will end up probably 2 hours (and a small fortune to park) from home. Perhaps we can carpool. Also this week, I was very weak from a gastro bug (not Covid, we checked!) and ended up falling in the night. My poor husband found me on the floor and must have been so worried, but I told him there was no way I was going to wait on the floor at urgent care or the ER in the middle of a pandemic. I don’t know that I would have let him take me anyway, but it was a little scary reminder that help isn’t just a simple phone call away anymore if we have an emergency.

Has the pandemic affected your ability to accomplish your life goals or plans in any way? If so, share some examples.

I can't seem to wrap my head around making plans for the long term. I can have hopes for things that I've planted in my yard, or colors I want to paint my house's interior, but I can't seem to fixate on my own future. It's sort of a vague "do what I have to to stay alive and keep my house" life goal.

Additional Material

My parents - politically conservative Covid-19 vaccine resisters - are FINALLY getting vaccinated! Both have had their first shots and are due for the 2nd in early October. It is honestly such a relief for so many reasons.

First and foremost, I no longer have to worry about their health and the impact they are having on the community around them. My mom works in an elementary school with unvaccinated kids. My dad volunteers at the same school. They both attend church. It has bothered me so much that they're at personal risk and also contributing to a potential risk in their social and workplace communities.

It's also a relief because my son isn't eligible for the vaccine yet - he's too young - and we have had to limit our contact with my parents because of this. It's led to guilty feelings on my part as well as anger and resentment on both sides. And it was about to happen between them and my brother as well, because his wife is due with their first baby in a few weeks, and they'd been considering whether or not it was safe to let my parents spend time with a newborn. That would have been a devastating choice for everyone involved. I am so thankful it doesn't have to be made!

It's also a relief because it gives me hope that there is a way to convince unvaccinated people to change their minds. My parents are strongly in the conservative camp for politics and social issues, and they tend to repeat a lot of misinformation about the coronavirus, vaccines, and other issues of the day. I had pretty much given up hope that people like them would change their minds. But my mom wrote about being a responsible community member and grandparent, and not putting people they cared about at risk, when she texted to tell me that she was going for her first shot. Perhaps the Delta variant scared them, or my pleas finally got through, or maybe my brother talked to them about the baby... who knows? But I am so happy that they are finally protecting themselves and doing their part for the protection of others, too!