Positivity Through a Pandemic

By Mac Pomeroy

For the last two semesters, I have been a columnist for The Jambar. I really cherish the job, and I love when my columns are published. I enjoy having a way to reach others and influence their way of thinking.

I usually write stories about things that happen in my daily life or just thoughts and ideas that come to me. I want to be an open book, allowing you all to feel like you know me. However, that hasn’t been easy lately.

The world is experiencing a pandemic, and this is a very difficult and scary time for many, including Youngstown State University students. We are unaware of what will happen next and are stuck with finishing the semester. Due to this, I have been struggling to figure out what to say.

I can’t tell any current stories since my daily life consists of waking up, getting frustrated with the lack of Wi-Fi at my house, attempting online classes and nothing else. Nothing interesting is happening. Even sharing ideas seems strange during this time.

For the past few weeks, I have struggled to find the right thing to say before realizing that there is no right thing. 

So, I have decided that instead of my usual advice columns, I am going to do my best to try to write something positive each week — stories from before this pandemic or the good that is still happening during it. I will never know fully how to approach the topic of the current situation, but I can leave that to the journalists and reporters. 

What I do know is how to be human. Right now, no one needs the usual advice that I tend to put out there. What you do need is to know you aren’t alone and how to take care of yourself during these times. So, I will start today with that.

As I mentioned, I am doing all right. My daily life is mostly just hanging out with my cats and trying to complete my work. Of course, online schooling is a struggle for everyone right now. Not only is motivation thin but so are the chances that Blackboard is working properly.

Before coming to YSU, I completed my junior and senior years of high school through online schooling. This isn’t entirely new to me, though I am still awful with technology. It certainly wasn’t something I ever wanted to do again, and it seems like most people are not exactly thrilled regarding the switch.

I used Blackboard for my classes back then as well. It didn’t work then either.

It has been a common struggle for my friends and me to find the motivation needed to complete the work, which is something I experienced during my time in online school. My best advice for this is simply to keep a planner and remind yourself frequently of your due dates.

Although it’s difficult to think about it now, there will be an “after” to this. Your life will continue once the pandemic settles, you just need to keep that in mind. 

Remember, Youngstown, we are strong. It will take a lot of discipline and caution to stay healthy, but this town and its people are tough. We can and will succeed through these times.

Stay safe and remember we are the city of grit.