What’s getting me through the global pandemic …

Text and photos by Fatimah Daffaie


Soon we will mark a full year of Worcester Public School students not being in school in-person. As a senior at Doherty High School who’s been learning remotely like all my peers, it’s extremely upsetting to me to think about the fact that I have not seen my teachers and friends for a full year. Despite that fact, this pandemic has introduced to me other things to do, which in turn have helped me survive this global pandemic:


Having little sisters means there’s always something to do! My sisters are younger than I am: one is in elementary school and the other is still a baby. They are funny and fun to be around. At the beginning of the pandemic, my baby sister started to talk and walk. Now, almost a year later, my baby sister can walk and run all around the house! A week ago, she learned how to say my other sister’s name, Zahraa. She loves copying everything Zahraa does, which is so funny! I have been able to spend so much quality time with my family, which is so crucial to me during these times.


I love having an organized house and room; it makes my life easier and easier for me to make decisions when finding things or choosing something to eat, wear or read! I have also learned so much about Marie Kondo, who is a well-known organizing consultant. I have learned from Marie Kondo about throwing away things that are not of use to me and do not mean anything to me, which is an inspiring message of only keeping the things that make us happy. It is also so satisfying for me to see everything organized and put together!

🌸Watching on-line lectures, reading, and trying out science experiments!


For example, I watched a talk by Dr. Gabor Mate, who is a family physician and has great knowledge on childhood trauma. His talk was called “When the Body Says No – Caring for Ourselves while Caring for Others.” I aspire to be in the medical field, and Dr. Mate’s teachings are crucial for my education in medicine – especially in childhood trauma. I am also reading Genentech: The Beginnings of Biotech by Sally Smith Hughes.

This book has made me more knowledgeable about vaccines and the history of biotechnology. I understand Covid 19 and the vaccines after reading this book. A few weeks ago, I did a DNA lab with strawberries. I used simple household materials like salt, dish soap, strawberries and rubbing alcohol. I took the DNA from the strawberries – the DNA looked like a cloud on top!

🌸Journaling and Writing

I have always loved journaling! I find it to be relaxing and a great way to reflect. I write about many things, but my favorite topics to write about are education, inequalities in the world, medicine and mental health. I learn best when I write about the things that I read, watch and even the things that I think about! Journaling is a way to understand how we feel and to think through ideas … seeing our thoughts and ideas on paper and being able to look at the progression and growth of our thoughts and feelings …

That said, I can’t wait to start hybrid learning next month! This is true for all our WPS students. A few days every week at Doherty will make me so happy!