Post Classifieds

An airing of griefs

A letter to the coronavirus

By Alaina Burris
On April 24, 2020

Photo/drawing by Alaina Burris


Dear COVID-19,

You have taken everything from me. My social life, my college, my ability to go out whenever I please. I haven’t sat down in a restaurant in a month; the closest I’ve been to a restaurant’s dining room is their drive thru window.

I can’t go see any of my friends and FaceTime is a poor substitute. You put states between us and invited stay-at-home orders to build a wall between those who would be close enough to go see. Week after week, I hope that your numbers go down so I can get out of the house for more than just a Taco Bell run.

You made it impossible to do anything that would have been normal before March. Did you know that the first week of our stay-at-home order, I couldn’t go see my dad in the hospital (unrelated to the coronavirus) because of the safety measures the hospital has to take? My mother, his wife, could not even get into the hospital; no visitors allowed. When I went to pick him up, the nurse that brought him outside barely came close enough to my car to get my dad in. And now, my grandma is in the same hospital (unrelated to the coronavirus), and I can’t go see her, neither can my parents, my aunts, my cousins; not even my grandpa can go see his wife of 57 years.

I can’t go out and practice for my sport and it would cost too much to get the materials required to build my own at-home bowling lane. Bowling has been the biggest part of my life for as long as I can remember, and the last time I picked up my bowling ball to throw it down a lane was March 14.

You have taken away things from more than just me; the class of 2020, both high school and collegiate, lost easily one of the most important semesters of their lives to you. Looking back, my high school senior year wouldn’t have been the same without the second semester, when I bowled, when I went to my last prom and when I graduated. Now you took that away from this class who is holding out hope that maybe, just maybe, before they start college, they will get those once in a lifetime experiences back. And what about the college seniors? The ones who were hoping for internships to help with graduation and anticipating their first real life job once it was all over. Now, they’re finishing their degrees from a laptop, lacking the emotional connection that is needed to finish strong. But they’re going to finish strong anyway, because they are stronger than you.

Some people think that you are for the better; you help us see what life is like when we can’t do whatever we want to. People are using you as a scare tactic for vaccinations, death and spreading diseases. People are using you against other people for their own benefit. People are terrified of you, but I am not.

You have shown me how not to take anything for granted. I spent a week with my best friends before being trapped in isolation and now I miss them more than anything. You have given me several days to spend with my parents, my grandparents and my pets, without having to leave them to make the drive back to school. You have given me the opportunity to love and cherish what I have, and the ability to appreciate everything even more when you are all gone.

You have hurt the world, you have left many people devastated. But you are weak. You hurt people and you are only going to fall in the end. We will come out of this on top of you because we are stronger than you. COVID-19 will be gone and we will get out of this.

From six feet away, Yours truly,

Alaina Burris

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