TNH’s Letters from Quarantine: Caitlin Staffanson

Hannah Donahue

Hey TNH readers! 

I hope you are all doing well.  

While these past few weeks have been a new experience for all of us, I’ve been spending a lot of my time in quarantine thinking about the different experiences we are all taking on. Many of us are stuck working from home, whether that is for school, a job, or both. Some of us are completely alone in quarantine, while others have family, friends, or a significant other we are with. No matter how you are spending your time, it’s important to realize some of us are struggling more than others.  

My time in quarantine has been spent with my four incredible roommates. I feel incredibly fortunate to be spending time with them and am cherishing every second in our off-campus apartment. I am from the Midwest, so going home right now is a very challenging option. The more I think about home, the more difficult it gets to be here in New Hampshire and so close to the campus I’ve spent nearly every day on for the past 2.5 years; however, my roommates and I are making the best of our situation.  

Since quarantine has started, I’ve been thinking a lot about other people’s experiences. While this experience is not easy for anyone, there are people struggling immensely. Some of us are more likely to catch this virus that is keeping us all in quarantine. I cannot even imagine how scary this time is for them. There are people in unsafe living situations and my heart breaks for them. There are people struggling to provide food for themselves and/or their families. Unemployment is soaring and the end is unknown. Mental health is a concern for many of us. It’s also important to remember that while we are in quarantine, there are many people who are working to fight this pandemic or are an essential worker who don’t have the option to stay home – every day is a new battle for them.  

My wish for you all during this time is to find a little yellow. The one thing I’ve shared with my family and friends from the start is yellow is a happy color. A thing you can find some positivity in amidst a darker time. We can be kind to one another whether that’s through social media, a financial donation, a phone call to someone you cannot see for a while or supporting local businesses online. I also hope you save some yellow for yourself. My wish is that during this time, no matter how difficult it gets, that you and others can find something to benefit yourself. It’s OK to be selfish. Maybe, this is finally the time for you to work out because you just haven’t found the time prior to this. Maybe, it’s finally taking some time to focus on your mental health and finding ways to de-stress and relax. For some, it’ll finally be getting the time to work on the project they’ve been putting off for months. Others may take this time to focus on getting their grades up. Yet some of us may take this time to do absolutely nothing, which is perfectly fine.  

The point of my letter to you all is that no matter how you spend your time in quarantine, find some hope, find some yellow and share it. This is not an easy time for any of us. Every day we face our own struggles. My hope is that no matter how difficult it gets for you; you find something to hold on to, to get you through each day. Stay safe and stay healthy. 

Best, Caitlin Staffanson