It's a difficult and unusual time, that is pretty apparent.

Just five weeks ago, I was on my college campus, walking to classes and meetings; just going out in general. Now, that reality has changed.

Over the last few weeks, I have had productive days when I wake up early, tune in at home for my virtual classes, finish my papers, study for exams, clean my room, make my bed, and video chat with my friends. Other days, I've been glued to my phone, spent too much time binge-watching, and left my bed unmade.

As monotonous as staying home can sometimes feel, I know that limiting face-to-face contact with people is helping -- we are all helping to slow the spread of COVID-19, avoiding overwhelming hospitals with the number of people requiring medical attention, and doing our part to protect those more vulnerable to the virus.

However, even if we know that what we are doing is for the good of everyone, and gladly do it, there are moments when the reality and gravity of the situation gets overwhelming. The way we approach our everyday routines and interactions have changed. The way we communicate with the people we love looks a little different, and there are people we wish we could have by our side but no longer can.

WDAY logo
listen live
watch live

As familiar as I have gotten with the Zoom loading screen or the ring of FaceTime, I am still reminded of this reality every time there's a lag in the technology or a complication with the way the lecture slides have been shared.

In the midst of all of the uncertainty and implications of COVID-19, it is reasonable to feel disappointed about missing things we were looking forward to, to feel some sadness about the cancellation of in-person commencements or the trip you planned for all year. It is easy to feel this way, and I have been reminding myself that just because I am inside does not mean that my life has become stagnant. Even given these extreme circumstances, the world has not stopped, and people are continuing on, fighting, living, finding creative ways to help each other and stay connected.

Although I don't know when it will be, I am looking forward to the day we no longer have to leave the house with masks and gloves on. In the meantime, there are a lot of thank yous to give. Thank you to all of the health care professionals who are taking risks to ensure the health of others, and thank you to everyone who has contributed during this time, whether that is by delivering supplies to people without access, supporting local businesses, or simply staying at home.

This column is a regular feature of the Tribune's monthly WAVE page. Do Yeon Kim is a Detroit Lakes High School graduate who is now a college student at Harvard.