It’s finally the year of our Lord 2021, and we’re still in the middle of a gosh darn global pandemic. And so 10 months in, it became time for me to celebrate my 22nd birthday as COVID-safe as possible. Luckily, I am in a living situation that allowed me to celebrate with two people in person, and it’s UD’s winter session so I don’t have too many school responsibilities.
Keeping with our roommate tradition of birthday photoshoots, we started the day with a series of photos before taking a walk outdoors. The weather was beautiful- plenty of sunshine in the unseasonably warm air.
Outside of my virtual class time, I spent most of my day having the time of my life baking my birthday cake while belting Broadway show tunes in my empty house. I could not have had a happier day. I made a Hershey kiss cake with strawberry mousse filling and whipped cream frosting. I had never made strawberry mousse before and didn’t realize how many steps were involved; pureeing the strawberries, heating on the stove, adding gelatin and letting it set in the fridge for 30 minutes stirring after every 10 minutes, and finally combining it with whipped heavy cream. After the slow filling and assembly process, it was time to decorate. Despite having to use a Ziploc bag to pipe, I think it turned out pretty great.
I also made my favorite wintery comfort food, chicken and dumplings, for dinner. I had a relaxing time cooking and eating dinner with the two friends in my bubble, followed by my weekly zoom bible study. To finish off the day, the three of us played some board games before heading to bed to end our little celebration.
Being in quarantine has made me really appreciate the little moments of joy in every task and cherish the time that I have to spend in college before graduation. Having a small and safe birthday was a very peaceful way to celebrate the past year of my life. And even though the in-person gathering was small, I was still able to reach out to several people during the week to call and catch up, and I’m thankful that we have the technology to connect in video calls and virtual games. Maintaining a positive attitude is key to getting through these unprecedented times with political turmoil and continually growing rates of COVID infection. As we move towards the “birthday” of the pandemic reaching America, I hope that we as a country can continue to spread positivity (and not disease) as we take daily precautions and continue connecting with one another virtually.