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"Coronacation" Issue 18

Hector Rodriquez, Mullen Senior
Hector Rodriguez, impressive in speech and debate, wonders how he’ll speak and debate during what has turned into distance everything. Having qualified for the national tournament that will be contested online for the first time, Rodriguez’s offering for Mullen Today’s Unordinary Times covers his apprehension as well as pushing through this tough time, staying motivated and centering on the positive in what he terms as  ”coronacation.”  
All of the chaos brought by the coronavirus (COVID-19) has been a very interesting journey. At first, I thought it would not last as long as it has, so I didn’t prepare well to practice social distancing for a long time.

I miss my friends and teachers, even students I don’t really talk to as seeing everyone as a part of a community really gave me the motivation to continue working hard in all that I do. Now that I can’t really see my friends in person, I’ve noticed that my motivation is a bit lost. However, as the weeks passed by, I managed to push through and gain some motivation to do online schooling.

Another sad part is the fact that speech practice has changed drastically. We still have the Nationals tournament, but it’s online. Our practices are going to be online as well. I feel like presenting speeches online is going to feel extremely awkward and, well, wack.

Thankfully, this break hasn’t been entirely bad news. I’ve had a lot more time to engage in activities I’ve always wanted to do, such as learning a new language (Korean), doing more exercise, meditating, coding (a lot) and playing Dungeons & Dragons online. I’ve realized that I’ve been spending so much time on my academics, that I haven’t been able to give myself a chance to pursue hobbies or activities that I’ve wanted to do.

It’s very easy for us to focus on the downsides: the lack of interaction with friends; lack of ability to go outside; being alone all day; and online schooling. But I say it’s just as important to focus on the good things. This would be 100 times worse without the current technology that we have right now. We now have a lot more free time to actually pursue activities and hobbies we’ve been craving; self-reflection on who we were; and gratitude for the time we had with our friends.

All in all, this “coronacation” is truly a unique experience, but we have to make the most out of it, We can’t just let the time fly. You can either come out of the “coronacation” as a motivated and optimistic person, or a lazy and pessimistic person.

“I do not say this because I have been in need, for I have learned to be content with whatever I have.” [Philippians 4:11]