“It was unusual not having to look over multiple kids at a time,” Jessica Gray said when talking about having her younger brothers’ friends over all the time. Now with COVID-19, that has been quite a big change.
Jessica Gray, a junior at Loy Norrix, shares how her homelife has altered in the past 8/9 months due to the spread of COVID-19 and school shutting down.
Not having her younger brother’s friends over at her house all the time wasn’t the only thing that changed for Gray. She is now learning to do tasks on her own and feels she has become more mature.
“Not everything has changed,” said Gray.
Gray said that she would usually help make dinner and would take care of her siblings, but now that most of her family is at home, they are able to tackle some of the chores together.
According to the study (2004 Study National Young Caregivers) completed by the National Alliance of Caregiving, nationwide there were about 1.3 or 1.4 million young caregivers going from ages 8-18. These numbers are most likely even larger because parents must give consent to allow their children to take part in the interview.
With lots of parents and children working at home, the house may feel much busier. Gray says she’s now being able to see what her dad’s job is really like. Gray also helps her brothers with getting ready for school and feeding them but also has to take care of herself.
Like many other teens dealing with doing at home learning, Gray sometimes struggles to find a quiet place to get all her work done, attend class, and keep up her grades.
“I learned that I’m easily annoyed,” Gray said.
With working and seeing the same people everyday, it’s easy to get bothered by the little things.
Gray has now taken into account how much her mother and father truly do for her. She spoke about how her parents take care of the whole family, and now that her mother is gone working and her father is working at home, Gray must make up for that work they do around the house. She has also been able to see how loyal and determined her sister is now that she is off working as well.
Another thing that Gray has taken into account is what she has realized about herself in this unexpected time.
“I learned that I need to be more interactive and outgoing,” Gray said.
She also stated that since school has become online she has had more chores, responsibilities, free time, and less exercise. Gray said that one thing that has not changed is that she still procrastinates and watches TV.
Although everything has been crazy lately, Gray has been able to find the good things amongst the bad.
“COVID has given time to work on my stories and review comments,” Gray said when asked about her future changing. Gray stated that she wants to be an author and now with more free time, she has been given the opportunity to work more and become a better writer.
Gray hopes that things will go back to normal soon and she can return to in person learning.