The year 2020 was a hard year for most. This year made people realize what they truly needed and appreciated in life. Even though it seemed like the year 2020 only was bad,  there were some good things that came out of 2020–whether it was personal or public. 

Covid-19 had happened unexpectedly; there was no warning and no time to prepare at all. It was scary for most of us who have never been in a pandemic. The closest we’ve ever been was reading about it in the history books. It went from toilet paper shortages to water having to be monitored to make sure there was enough for everyone. We went from being able to see family and friends to not seeing them at all. Going out to eat wasn’t an option. There were masks everywhere. It became a natural part of our wardrobe over time.

Soon after the pandemic, protests and riots broke out everywhere. People were breaking into businesses and stealing. They were lighting stuff on fire, people were blocking the roads, marching, holding signs, and fights broke out against police and each other. But good things did come out of 2020. Because we learned to value each other more, we learned what to do if another pandemic did ever break out. I interviewed some students and staff here at Taft High and here’s what they said about 2020.

“My 2020 actually went ok; it wasn’t the end of the world. Yes, things happened but, at the end of the day, it just made all of us stronger as human beings. It taught us our flight or fight. It taught me personally to value the things I do have in life. I do think this year was rough. It messed up people’s mental health. If I could change one thing about this year it would’ve been the riots. We need to learn to love each other instead of going against each other,” said a junior at Taft High School. 

Most people learned to value things in life more this year. 

“My 2020 sucked a lot because I couldn’t do things like see my friends, or go to work to make money or go to school; but it was also kinda good because it brought me and my girlfriend closer because I had the chance to see her more and we hit our one-year.  One thing 2020 has taught me is that the world doesn’t listen to what the government says but should for these reasons. If I could change one thing about 2020, it would be get rid of Covid-19,” said a Freshman at T.U.H.S.

Some people were able to get the opportunity to spend more time with their loved ones. 

My 2020 was kinda mixed. School has been weird and I miss the daily interaction with students. I am worn out with politics and the daily news of the Covid. I have been able to spend a ton of time with my family which has been nice. I think the thing that I like the most about 2020 is all the time I have been able to spend with my family. We have been at home and less busy than usual and it has been nice at times just spending time with them that I usually would not get to do. I would try to make the Covid less political and keep it based on facts. There is so much fear and animosity among people but it is hard to even know what the truth is,”said Ryan Heber, a teacher from Taft High.

Covid gave people the time to get closer to each other.

”My 2020 has been great. I’m happy to be alive and lucky that no one in my circle of humans has succumbed to the virus. I feel for those who have been severely affected, but understand that this is a natural event that happens in a population every so often. I’m also happy to see that my friends, family, and I are able to adapt to difficult situations and still enjoy our lives and keep a positive outlook for the future. I really like the fact that this situation in 2020 has allowed me to spend more time with my family, at home. I love my wife and daughter, and I think that going through this together has made our bond stronger.

Obviously, I wish that 300,000 Americans hadn’t been taken too soon from their families. It’s so very sad to think of those that were killed by the virus had to spend their final days and hours away from their loved ones, not being able to say goodbye in person. Very sad,” said Mike Cowan, a teacher at Taft High School.

It was a rough year this year not being able to touch one another.

Overall, my 2020 was good. My family and I have managed to stay healthy, which is the most important thing. One thing that I liked about 2020 was being able to spend time with my family. Having to quarantine at home, allowed us to spend more time together than we normally would have. I can’t change things that were out of my control, such as the coronavirus; so, the one thing I would have changed was getting more projects done around my house.” says, a Taft High teacher.

Some people took the stay at home orders to just do projects around their house.

My 2020 was as good as it can be in these unprecedented times. There were many challenges, but also moments I am now fond of. As everyone else, I want life to be back to normal, but the health and safety of all is more important. I know we will get there eventually. As much as I miss the classroom, I liked working and learning in the comfort of my own home. I also like that this pandemic has allowed me to spend more time with my family. We are usually so busy with work and now having to stay home most of the time has given us the opportunity to bond. If I could change one thing about the year 2020 it would be  COVID-19 never happening. I’m sure it is an obvious answer. The virus has caused so many struggles and affected everyone in some way. Many students are having a hard time with distance learning, adults are losing their jobs or having difficulty making ends meet, people’s mental health is declining, and many lives have been lost due to the virus. We took many things for granted, but now is the time to value what and who we have.” said Jhoana Osornia, a teacher from Taft Union High School.

Mental health was one of the big things declining because of the effects of Covid-19.