Reflections on Quarantining



This blog post was written by members of our National Youth Mentoring Advocacy Council (NYMAC). Find out more about NYMAC here.

Call me Ishmael 

Or rather don’t; I hate Moby Dick. But I do love reading and writing. It’s always been my desire to write a book someday although I could never quite find the time between work and school and whatever else it is that occupied my time.  

And all of a sudden, I had none of that. The world came to an abrupt stop, leaving me alone with my imagination for the first time in many years. To say it was disorienting would be an understatement. And as days became weeks which then became months, I grew bored. I’ve always maintained that boredom breeds creativity, and never has this been more true than in the midst of a worldwide pandemic. So, I picked up a pen (metaphorically) and started writing. 

-Karine Gauthier  


 “If life gives you lemons … make lemonade”. I’m sure we have all heard of that one before, and it’s fair to say that this year has been full of lemons. With all these lemons, I figured I could make more than just lemonade, and started to get creative with my life recipes. As far as existential crisis go, being confined in your home allows you to think about life and your passions. This reintroduced me to my love for etymology and I began to work on a blog. In the blog, I suggest that names have meaning, and have the possibility of giving us insights into our current situations. I looked into the name Corona to see if I could find anything interesting, and it turns out that in astronomy, the sun’s corona is normally visible only during a total solar eclipse, when it is seen as an irregularly shaped pearly glow surrounding the darkened disk of the moon” (Google). I don’t know about anyone else, but these last few months have almost felt like a total solar eclipse; dark and out of our controlBut what’s cool about the corona, at least in astronomy, is that it reminds us that there is still light even when it is hidden in darkness. Perhaps this can give us hope as we move forwardIn the meantime, we can try to focus on the light that is visible while we wait for darkness to pass. 

– Keyla Keza 


Many of us, at some point or another, wish to freeze time. Maybe in the moments leading up to a job interview, or in the last minutes of an exam you needed just a couple more moments to prepare a couple talking points or perfect your piece. Well recently I had this sought-after opportunity, not at a convenient time, but useful nonetheless. 

Everything was delayed or extended; time seemed to slow. But it seemed that I had no figurative project to finish or perfect, just sand to watch slip between my fingers. I was wrong. I did have a test, a test to live life as I aspire to. I also had something to refine, myself. I got in touch with my roots, read my country’s literature, and rekindled connections with my relatives. If time had been my justification to forego something, now was the time to pursue it.  

– Ícaro Tozetto