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Katlyn Tourigny

“Naturally I’m quite introverted. Isolation is a loner’s dream. I enjoy spending time at home with my boyfriend Josh, and my cat Miss Kitty. Quarantine has been frightening, but I’m grateful to have a home I love, and to share it with them. We’ve been cooking together more often, and I’ve found time to draw and paint that I wouldn’t have had before. I’ve spent more time outside too; we have a nice little backyard. When I do feel cooped up it’s nice to go out for awhile and stare into the woods. Sometimes we see deer — they’re always fun to watch.

I’m also lucky enough to still be employed at the local grocery store where some of my good friends work. I still get to see them, but the store feels so strange now. There are signs all over the walls and floors reminding people to maintain social distance. People come in with masks and gloves and its usually dead by 5 p.m. There’s also been a shortage of toilet paper, meat and produce, like many other stores.

What scares me the most about the quarantine and the coronavirus is not my own health but my father’s. His immune system is compromised; in fact he’s had shingles on his face for the past week or so. At first, the medicine he was prescribed made him feel sicker. But after seeing the doctor again he’s been doing better. I still worry for him though. He’s smoked heavily for nearly 50 years, and while he says his lungs feel fine, I know they’re probably not.

I feel the most important thing for people to do right now is to have understanding and patience for one another. Everyone is experiencing this craziness together; we need to have empathy to get through this very strange time. One morning when I was at work, an older woman in a mask stopped just to thank me for being there during all this madness. I’ve worked in food service for nearly a decade and let me say that doesn’t happen very often. It felt surreal, but heart-warming as well. People need to be there for each other during this time, even if it’s from a distance.”

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Katlyn Tourigny
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