Anna, 25, Italian, currently in Huelva (Spain) – Live: From The Pandemic

How did the COVID-19 pandemic affect you the most?

I’ve found out about the pandemic a few months ago, like everyone else, and saw it spreading through Italy without being able to go there and somehow help my family. Spain lived a similar situation a couple of weeks after, so my boyfriend and I had to quickly figure out how to work from home and how to organise ourselves in this situation, and in this case our family helped us from the distance assuring that they didn’t need us and that it was safer for them if we stayed in Spain. Living abroad for years gets you used to videocalls and distance, so I’d say that Covid-19 affected me the most at the moment I had to stick to the decision of staying far from my loved ones in order to protect them, focusing on how lucky I am with the lifestyle I can afford living here and hoping for the best for them.

What is your wish for the future? 

My biggest wish for the future at this point is that people and governments that had lost their moral and human principles will be able to go back and stick to them, considering the importance of research and public health care and remembering that despite all our differences we all belong to the same planet and we all deserve the right to live safely in it. Both from a humanitarian and an ecological point of view. This pandemic probably brought up a very idealistic or too romantic perspective, but if we don’t change our minds now, then when?

What would you like to be doing right now?  

Probably hugging my sister and my grandmothers, eating at the same table once again and simply enjoying each other’s company

If you would like to share with us, please submit your story here.

Bianca, 25, Italian, currently in Cambridge (UK) – Live: From The Pandemic

How did the COVID-19 pandemic affect you the most?

I have a small business so from a practical point of view it means that we don’t have as much work right now, so we’re spending a lot more time at home, and facing a lot of uncertainty. The governmental help does make a difference, especially in covering our staff’s wages, but what really scares us is whether things will go back to normal. From a personal point of view it’s much more complex, a part of me appreciates slowing down and reconnecting with people, but I am on an emotional rollercoaster. Having struggled with depression and anxiety my whole life this situation has definitely affected the balance I had found. I am often extremely anxious, about the future but also about little things that shouldn’t affect me this much. The first week I spent at home I really struggled to be productive or positive, I spent most of my days watching Netflix alone while my partner worked, despite having things to do and a garden that allows me to spend time outdoors. It definitely reminded me of some of my hardest times from a mental health point of view, which was really scary. I’m trying to feel better now, spending more time in the garden, less time on social media, more time doing things that I love and relax me, like colouring and planning camping trips for the future. This allows me to be more positive and actually see and appreciate what I have, and to spend less time stuck in my thoughts. Overall how I feel changes constantly, which is quite exhausting. I’m trying to take a week at a time, which isn’t very easy for a planner like me, but it seems to be working.

What is your wish for the future? 

I hope that everything that is happening is allowing all fo us to reflect on what world we have created and what really matters. Having the whole world being forced to slow down can be an opportunity to make big changes once it’s time to get back to “normal”. I think this situation is allowing us to see the world in a more unified way, and I’m hoping that it’s teaching us to be less selfish, to think about the consequences of our actions (for example, if we hoard on food we create food shortages) and to learn that resources aren’t infinite.
The two things that I really wish would happen are:
– Finally starting to seriously act and change the way we live to reduce Climate Change, which would have much more long term consequences;
– That we will move away from the consumption of cheap products that are made under unfair and unethical working conditions, in favour of ethically made and durable alternatives.

What would you like to be doing right now?  

I’d like to be travelling in our van with my partner and our amazing dog Ettore!

If you would like to share with us, please submit your story here.

Lara, 30, Italian, currently in Venice (Italy) – Live: From The Pandemic

How did the COVID-19 pandemic affect you the most?

I was living in London when it all started, I was by myself and I got ill for more than 2 weeks. I was very scared since I couldn’t get any real help from doctors due to the Covid emergency being underestimated in the UK at the beginning. Even after I recovered I was very stressed and anxious all the time since I was living stuck in my room because my flatmates didn’t care about the whole situation. I decided to go back to my hometown, Venice (Italy) and it was a nightmare organizing everything since the borders were closed. My flights were canceled all the time and it was impossible to call the Italian embassy. Luckily, they improved the flights’ system and I got home safe. It’s still hard because I am self isolating alone and I feel lonely and anxious sometimes, I miss my family and friends.

What is your wish for the future? 

I wish everyone would be happy and healthy. I will spend more time with family and friends and I will keep traveling and enjoying life to the fullest.

What would you like to be doing right now?  

Hugging my dog Django.

If you would like to share with us, please submit your story here.