Julia Colasanti

March 2020 

Robbed of Nature

COVID-19 leaves many lonely, scared and panicking. The uncertainty that looms above each hour results in level-headed humans acting out of character—hoarding toilet paper, blaming masses and finding comfort in conspiracies. Social distancing has removed the distractions that many relied on and stripped us of the crutches that made us feel whole. The level of quarantine escalating at various speeds has forced people inside and made them feel lost in their own homes.

 

In the constant fear and anxiety of being cooped up, people have forgotten that this is how we spend most of our lives. The EPA reports that on average, Americans spend 90% of their time indoors. The difference between voluntarily living our lives inside and being forced indoors under quarantine is as vast as our uncertainty in these harrowing times. Now that we are forced to cooperate, we are acutely aware of the four walls we incarcerate ourselves in 90% of our lives.

 

In this state of lonely isolation, we look out our window longing for nature, missing something that the virus has stolen from us, craving what we’ve taken for granted—the great outdoors. Amidst the crisis and fear, the separation from nature has awoken our primal hunger to connect with the Earth.

 

Maybe this rebirth of al fresco love spawns from the theft of it, or maybe our forced isolation leaves us needing nature more than ever. Many studies have shown that being outdoors combats depression. One study proved that even sounds of nature positively impact the brain. With the current world anxiety high enough to seemingly postpone spring, all we need is an oasis. So, open your windows, plan a new life with nature at the center and never again take our Earth for granted.

JULIA COLASANTI