Michael, Saginaw County

Storyteller: Phyllis Schmitter

Michael was unemployed at the time of the pandemic. Before he found out about the pandemic, he was spending his days hanging out with friends and family, going out to different places, and working on various arts and crafts. He was simply enjoying life. When the pandemic fully hit the United States he suddenly had to stop doing all of that and restrict most of his social interaction to intermediate family and online people that he wasn’t that accustomed to. Going through public areas in the pandemic wasn’t easy, and you often have to stay cautious and aware so that other people’s irresponsibility doesn’t affect you.

Michael’s seasonal job also started up during the pandemic, giving him an interesting insight into working retail during COVID-19. People often didn’t end up following the rules with the regulations such as the 6-foot apart rule and being careful about sanitation. Michael’s social life also shifted. Spending time with family became much harder and his social group slowly shifted into a new group of mostly online friends to do online activities with. However, with this, the pandemic was hard.

There were many ups and downs and stagnation was always a threat, however Michael always stayed positive because that’s just how he usually dealt with things. He may have felt depressed during the pandemic, however, his positivity always shined through, even through the depression of missing out on family traditions and missing out time with his other friends. His new group of friends, also proved to be incredibly great and helped him throughout the pandemic and lead to him meeting even more people online that he eventually planned on meeting up with.

Overall, the pandemic has been an interesting experience for Michael. His life has shifted and swayed, filled with new experiences during the pandemic and ideas of new ones for after the pandemic. While he may have missed out on time with family, it still might’ve been overall worth it in the long run, just to have these new experiences.

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