Alisa Stolyar: Repetion and Longing

June 2, 2021

I’ve been a remote student all year and it has had its benefits, but the detriments are definitely draining at times. Staring at a computer screen for so many hours every other day has become my definition of “going to school.”

This, coupled with the hours I spend at the computer doing my homework or working on asynchronous assignments on the days where I don’t have to “go to school” only increases the drain.

My bedroom is where I rest, where I do homework, where I exercise, where I sleep, and now it has become my classroom. On days when I have school, I find myself confined to my desk area, staring at my laptop.

They always told us that screens will be our demise and that we should avoid looking at our devices for too long. Now, it has become something that I have to do and nobody is talking about it.

Nobody is really acknowledging how much time remote students spend on our laptops every day, even though that is something that they try to curb when talking about the fully remote schedule where there are more breaks and less screen time.

In the string of photos, my face shows a solemn and bored expression as I stare at the computer screen. The photos range from early morning to evening, which the light changing outside the window reveals.

These photos were taken over a few days and were not staged.

In the first photo, I am on Zoom for my first-period class. In the second photo, I am doing asynchronous work in the afternoon. In the third photo, I am finishing up homework in the evening before the next day of school.

This fatigue is something I feel myself, as well as see many others deal with.

I can only speak for myself, but I personally feel burnt out and undermotivated because of this repetitive routine that I’ve found myself in.

I’ve been doing gymnastics for over a decade, and I’ve had the same coach for close to the same amount of time. When Covid started, my routine of going to practice a few times a week and seeing my coach and my friends ceased.

Last year was going to be my final year of gymnastics, due to some ongoing injuries. I was really trying to make the best out of it. It was really difficult to stop an activity that I have been consistently a part of for so long, especially so suddenly.

We didn’t know when our next practice would be or if I would even see some of my friends again. I had a few friends on the team who were seniors last year, and I didn’t see them during the day because they went to different schools. So gymnastics practice was really the only time I would see them.

Those teammates graduated last year and went off to their respective colleges. I didn’t even get to have the last meet or last practice with them.

I didn’t even know the last practice I attended was going to be my last one. I think we all were under the impression that we would go back to normal after a few weeks.

We all know now that wasn’t the case. We all really missed each other. In April, my coach decided to have a team Zoom meeting, so we could all say hi to each other and talk about how our lives have been going since we couldn’t have our typical gossip circles at practice.

In this photo, everyone is smiling because my coach asked everyone to pose for a picture.

This is the last photo I got with my team. I made a lot of great memories and I miss them very much.

Hopefully, when Covid is alleviated and everything is somewhat back to normal, I’ll visit the gym and get to see my teammates and my coach once more.

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