Stay-at-home birthdays


Photo by Gaelle Marcel on Unsplash

With stay-at-home orders across the country, many people are spending their birthdays at home. Celebrations have shifted from group gatherings with friends and family to quick meetings through social media.

Erika Pernis, Guest Contributer

Parties, cake, balloons, streamers, cards, gifts, and friends; it’s not really a year for all this decor, food, and celebration as birthdays are being spent under stay-at-home orders. Birthdays are a special day in which a person is celebrated for the anniversary of their birth, typically accompanied by loved ones, sweet treats, and hopefully a whole lot of fun. However, for all the Pisces, Aries, and Taurus people of the world, the coronavirus had other plans for this celebratory milestone.

I definitely did not expect 2020 to force social distancing and cause many like myself to struggle to celebrate.  

Let’s be real, staying at home trying to come up with alternatives is not an ideal celebration. Birthdays corresponding to the pandemic will most likely remember the pandemic and what it took away, rather than their supposed-to-be memorable day. It’s the type of day that can’t really truly be postponed, and it can be difficult trying to make a kid feel special with an uncontrollable barrier on the day they want to feel like a star.

In truth, the coronavirus has been a real party pooper. All people really get are a few greetings via social media or a text message. Having someone drive by your house or drop off a small present is not the same as hugging your best friends. Maybe making a homemade cake can be enjoyable, but baking is not everyone’s forte. Along with that, having parties in a virtual space such as Zoom and Google Hangouts is an interactive way to bring people together, though it’s not as fun as all your closest friends gathering around the table to sing happy birthday.

It’s the small moments I remember the most. Blowing out the candles and making a wish are things I can look back and smile at. Birthdays are definitely up there when it comes to milestones, along with Christmas, or the first day of school. 

In reality, there’s no going around the fact that at this time, birthdays are going to be spent at home for the safety of ourselves and others.  Quarantine should not deter from having at least some sort of celebration. Mindset is everything. Thinking beyond being trapped in the confines of your house can make all the difference on a day that shouldn’t be so boring. Spending time with your family, playing a board game, watching a movie, and other activities can help make the in-house experience pretty delightful.

Communication also plays a big factor, even though it can’t necessarily have the convenience of being face to face. Facetime and Netflix Party have been two great ways I have kept in touch with my friends. Whether it’s having a conversation or streaming a movie, it’s good to know that I can still talk to them even though it’s not in person. A virtual platform can be a nice way to let someone know you’re thinking about them.

During a time like this, it’s easy to be pessimistic and let boredom drive your whole social distancing experience, but it’s so much more valuable to try and find ways to be productive and make the most of the situation no matter what day it is.