PARENTRAP Children

Off to the hills

Illustration: Sahil Upalekar

Illustration: Sahil Upalekar   | Photo Credit: Illustration: Sahil Upalekar

Hello friends! I know it’s been a while since I last wrote to all of you, and I’m sorry that I just upped and disappeared there for a bit. Between you and me, I just wasn’t feeling so great.

So, online school started a few weeks ago, and, in the beginning, it was really fun. I got to see my friends every day and chat with them, and it kind of felt like there was a purpose to the day again. Apart from finding 10 new ways to annoy the Pesky Brother, that is.

And unlike ‘real’ school with all the classes crammed in one after the other, online school had a break after every class. And school finished at lunch time, with all post-lunch sessions ‘optional’. I don’t understand, which student would willingly sign up for extra, non-compulsory classes?

But, after a few weeks, it wasn’t that great any more, you know? Seeing my friends on a screen reminded me how long it had been since I’d seen them for real. Setting up secret chat groups to send messages to each other made me realise how much I missed doodling on chits of paper and throwing it at someone in class. Working on projects online is not the same as working on one in someone’s house, and doing more time pass than the actual project.

Alien invasion?

In short, after a few weeks, I just didn’t want to do online school any longer. I really thought my parents would flip out when I told them, and say that I had no choice. But guess what? They said they understood! And that they felt that way too with all the work from home and Zoom meetings they’ve been doing. (In other news, I think my parents have been abducted by aliens. Who ARE these beings they’ve sent as replacements?) They said it’s called burn out, and that it’s a kind of mental exhaustion that some people have. So, they let me take a day off every now and then.

It was kind of what I needed. To take a day off to sleep in, read, cycle, doodle and just not sit down in front of a screen. I then decided to write to the school about how I felt and, guess what? They’ve shared a student survey to see how many other kids feel that way, and maybe change the schedule a bit.

The thing I learned from all of this is: if you’re not feeling great about something talk to someone about it.

We’re off to the hills for the next few weeks, so the entire family can take a break from school and work and the pandemic. I’m not going to have a great WiFi connection, which means I won’t be able to write to all of you. So, it’s a few more weeks of no Bug Boy bugging you. But I’ll be back. Promise! Till then, stay safe, stay healthy, and, if you don’t feel so great, TELL someone!

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Printable version | Sep 26, 2020 10:29:26 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/children/off-to-the-hills/article32062621.ece

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