Covid-19 separates family, friends and co-workers

By Miguel Castillo III
Pulse Staff Reporter

Female wearing a facemask.
Portrait of a female wearing a facemask. Photo by Johnny Rinza, @_r.o.u.s.e._ on Instagram.

Circle the house for the fortieth time, hear the conversation on the monitor, and sit on the bed to complete homework. This routine is familiar for family and friends as society social distances to flatten the curve of patients who might contract the coronavirus. This virus has vastly changed the lives of people all over the United States of America and the world. 

I discuss the current situation with my mother who is in between her own work virtual meetings. My mother, who is the epitome of decorum with hair dyed, nails manicured, and a James Avery-adorned body, lamented her current situation between virtual work meetings. 

“Working alone can be so lonely,” she said. 

Despite the loneliness, there are some benefits still present.  

“A shorter commute and casual Friday everyday is a benefit,” she said.

As a senior claims benefit processor for Aetna CVS Health, her workload is now lighter.

“People aren’t going to the doctor or undergoing elective procedures. There are less claims to review,” she said. “New codes for diagnosis and procedures have to be learned.” 

I let my mother return to her computer to finish her hours for the day. I call my friend Dominique Hernandez and ask how her students are doing. She works as a Student Support Coordinator for DeVry University. 

“We have had to submit more extensions for finals and assignments,” she said. 

“Some students have to drop classes since they don’t have enough time or focus anymore… I try to offer as much resources within my capabilities, even if that is just lending a ear,” she said.

I refuse to believe there is no inspiration coming from this pandemic. I message Johnny Rinza, a fellow student of my high school alma mater, on his creative outlet during social distancing. Johnny has a thriving passion that he shares on his instagram _r.o.u.s.e._ of photographs that range from graduation photos to motor vehicles. I message him and ask, “Has your inspiration changed while social distance recommendations have been set?”

“I started to focus more on the subjects around me,” replied Johnny. My curiosity piqued, and I ask: “Do you have any projects you are looking forward to accomplishing once social distance orders expire?” 

Johnny mentions several projects that are upcoming, once it is safe to perform photography shoots. 

Social distance has disrupted the life of everyone I spoke to, but even in this pandemic, people are still finding a path to help or create.