The year 2020 has been crazy so far and it's not even over yet. 2020 started off like any other and soon plunged us into what felt like an endless lockdown due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.
In March, the entire state and most of the country was fully shut down, with the only places open being supermarkets, gas stations, liquor stores and hospitals.
This extreme lockdown was a shock to our routines and normal lives, but ultimately necessary in slowing the spread of COVID-19. Now that winter's rolling back around, the cases of COVID-19 in the U.S. are rising and people are beginning to fear the worst will occur once again.
The prospect of a second lockdown is up in the air but the rumors are getting people riled up and raiding the grocery store for toilet paper and cleaning supplies once again.
It's funny to me, thinking about what a second lockdown would look like. One would think the world would have understood from the first lockdown what's happening and how to handle the situation, but it seems as though the craziness and impulsivity out of fear are happening again.
From the first lockdown, we know everyone went out to stores and stocked up on everything, as if a zombie apocalypse was on the way, but that was unnecessary since supermarkets were open throughout the pandemic.
I'm not in any way judging those who stocked up. It's understandable in many circumstances why one would react in that manner — many people were afraid and all of what was happening was unknown and new.
Many people feared for their safety and wanted to stay home entirely through the pandemic. As months went on, it seems as though people relaxed into the idea that the pandemic was happening and the virus was dangerous, but with the proper precautions it can be prevented.
This is why when rumors of a second lockdown arose, it was so striking to see people revert back to how things were pre-pandemic as if no one knew what was going on and had never seen this virus before.
On a separate note, the rumors and push for a second lockdown are not all bad. Yes, being inside again will be frustrating. We've definitely been through so much this year and we all want this to end and go back to our normal lives.
But by having a second lockdown and starting it early before things get too terrible, we can prevent a dramatic spread and save lives and end the pandemic sooner.
The lockdown should be a national event. If the entire country locks down for three weeks at the minimum with only necessary places open — hospitals, grocery stores, gas stations — then the virus will reach a point of a flatline and hopefully end with zero new cases for the U.S.
It happened in Australia. It locked down and was strict about going out but now everything there is back to normal, no masks, no new cases. I'm not sure if the U.S. or each state individually will decide to lockdown again, especially with the news of vaccines coming out in the next few months.
But a lockdown would be beneficial, and if done the right way, it will not have to be anywhere near the severity or the length of the last one. The sooner we all decide to stay inside, even for a short amount of time, it can slow the spread and end the surge of cases, bringing us closer to normality.
Personally, the first lockdown was rough, having to be inside and go from in person learning to online was a very difficult adjustment and very upsetting.
I know for me and for many others, anxiety levels were much higher and there was definitely the fear of the unknown and the danger of this dangerous virus killing so many around the world. As the pandemic droned on and the lockdown continued, that fear and anxiety lessened and it was easier to find things to be happy about and to do.
I got to spend time with my family daily, which was fun. We would play games, watch movies, stay up so late. It was like an endless sleepover, and things like that are what kept me going in those moments of fear and anxiety in regards to the danger of the virus.
If there was another lockdown, I don't think the reaction will be anywhere as bad as it was at the beginning because we have lived through it before, we know what the virus is and what can happen, and we are still living through it.
We don't have to adjust to online school because we are living it right now, and not much has changed from when the lockdown started so a second lockdown will not be as dramatic a difference from our lifestyle this time around.
And hopefully, if there is a lockdown because we are used to what is expected of us and have experienced it before, it will be short and we will come out the other side virus-free and back to the lives we were used to before 2020.