Being a student and working part time is a struggle all on its own. Now, school is going virtual. Work is slow, and hours have been cut. Great, but I still need money for bills and food.
Once I do go to the store everything is wiped out clean – eggs, dairy, pasta, rice, beans, vegetables and more. Oh, so now everyone is a master chef cooking pasta and eating their vegetables.
Look I get it, we’re going through a crisis, but what worries me most is not the virus itself; it’s how people are responding to it: stocking up on toilet paper for the next 10 years – really? As I was in the store, panic started to set in. My eyes gazed at all the empty aisles as I walked down each row with an empty cart. In an instant, my mind goes into a fog and all I hear is my heart beating faster and faster. At that point, I knew things were getting real and now that money is low, I need to spend wisely.
Yes, there is still takeout at restaurants for now, but I need food that will sustain me and my family for a few weeks.
I understand everyone needs to practice social distancing, but we all need money. Before the governor issued an order for all bars and restaurants to halt dine-in service, there were some people who would still go out even with a cold infecting everyone else around them without a care. Then you have those who have been wiping down their tables with disinfectant wipes before they sit down.
Working at a restaurant, I rely on customers who come in to eat. Now, there is only takeout, which means most people will be laid off.
Money is not the only thing I worry about; it’s also my classes that have converted to online. Professors are still counting participation points, have deadlines, and still require students to perform the same as if they are still in class. At the same time, all I am thinking about is graduating on time, money and whether stores will restock rice today.
Students and faculty are faced with, “What’s the most important thing right now? Money, education or family?”
I don’t think I have it too bad because there are other students who have it worse than I do. Some students are probably not allowed back home, some are international students and some rely on the campus to provide housing because their parents don’t accept them for who they are.
I feel so drained and don’t feel like myself anymore. I just hope that students who are faced with difficult decisions can overcome anything and everything that comes their way.
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