eing a part of a statistic is odd, but being a part of a self-reported Covid statistic for WVU reaches a whole new level. This week, about 20 cases were self-reported. Being included in that number gives me the strongest urge to hide my face.
I’ve been angry with this pandemic since it began. No one had time for it. It was an extremely rude guest that just walked right into our lives without even calling first. Yet, getting a positive result back from a test heightened the anger. I’ve essentially bathed in sanitizer until my skin looked a bit too pasty, I’ve not seen my friends in a year and have spent almost all of my time staring out of my apartment window, wondering why I can hear young kids gathering – without me. But that’s just me being selfish because it’s all superficial.
And, yet, I wasn’t careful enough. That’s on me. I’m the only one at fault.
But it’s not right for me to be angry. Obviously, it’s an inconvenience. Obviously, I don’t like being sick nor do I enjoy being sick and alone. But I knew that my body could take it. I knew that I would be OK. There are others out there who have battled this virus and have lost their family. I don’t have the right to be angry for selfish reasons. Before all of this, I rarely left the house anyway. So, why was I even upset? What, because I no longer could tell people that I wanted to stay home instead of hanging out because it turned into the only option?
When I contacted the school to inform them that my results were positive, I expected to be scorned. Instead, they asked me if I had access to food. When I emailed my professors to give them the news of why I couldn’t come to class, I feared the response I’d receive. Instead, they allowed me to join class virtually and still continue to ask how I’m doing. Still, I couldn’t help to feel as if I had burdened them with the news, as if I had no care about the current climate. And I still worry about the possibility that I could have exposed others without knowing.
In fact, this illness has always bothered me, but it becomes different once you’ve seen close ones battle with it. And for that, I am angry.
I’m angry that I see people and wonder how they haven’t gotten it because they act as if they’re invincible. Not that I wish that upon them, but I worry about those around them who aren’t as strong. I’m angry that it became a heavy political topic when there’s nothing a single man can do to fix it. I’m angry that I’ve had to cry because of fear that someone would get too sick.
Currently, I’m still in isolation — which isn’t much different from the norm. The only difference is that I hear my classmates and professors talk about the lecture through my laptop speakers. At least I don’t have to wear a mask to virtual classes.
— Hannah Morgan, a native of Wyoming County, is attending WVU in pursuit of a career in journalism. Her email is at firstname.lastname@example.org.