A lot of schools have started to open up. States are slowly loosening restrictions, and we are slowly reinstating normalcy. Or, are we? We have all got used to the new normal. Most of us hated working from home and studying from home in the beginning. However, many people I talked to informed me that they started enjoying it after some time!

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Uncombed hair and home clothes riddled with holes sum up our lockdown look. And now it’s time to say goodbye to that. Offices are calling their employees back, schools are calling teachers and children back, and everyone is getting ready to leave their homes again- every day!

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All of us managed to get out of our houses during the lockdown. Maybe it was an occasional trip to the grocery store that gave you some respite from house arrest, or maybe it was a trip that you went on guiltily with your friends or family. But as a community, most of us had reached a phase where that was enough. Staying at home became something we enjoyed after a point in time.

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It offered us immense flexibility. When I was in school, I woke up at 6 am to attend my classes that started at 8.30 am. My young cousins wake up at 8.00 am, and sometimes even 8.15 am, to attend an 8.30 class! They don’t have to go through the trouble of packing their bags or getting their uniforms ready. An occasional trip to meet their friends was enough. Their phones and laptops provided ample connection for them. I read somewhere that the pandemic brought us closer together in a sense. Earlier, we would gather around a table and look at our phones, today we gather around our screens and look at each other’s faces!

I talked to one of my old teachers and she told me that she takes online classes from school, and that she is absolutely enjoying school with no children! On the other hand, a professor of mine said that college is not the same without the students. So, we have a bag of mixed opinions here, but surely everyone seemed to enjoy staying at home.

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The pandemic has shown us how resilient we can be. A lot of us suffered tragic losses, some more than the others, yet we were all able to find a silver lining. Working from home meant that your working hours could extend to 8 pm, it meant that you would no longer be seeing your beloved children and colleagues, but that was okay because at least you wouldn’t have to get out of your house clothes! When tragedy engulfed us we learned to appreciate the small things.

Now that it’s time to go back, we can rejoice, because hopefully, fixed office hours would mean shorter working hours. It would mean we can gossip with our colleagues, wear the sarees and shirts that have not seen daylight in a long time and engage with our community more.

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But most of us are definitely going to miss working from home. I, for one, am very excited about living on my own and going to my workplace. But eating my mother’s food and staying in my house are things I’ll sorely miss. But I also know that I’ll find the silver lining of working from the office, just like I found the silver lining of working from home!

So, are you ready to go back to school? Are you ready to welcome your children? Don’t worry if you are not, you’ll find the joys of it when you get there. Maybe eating your colleague’s delicious lunch is all it would take to make you feel that going to school every day is not a bad deal after all!

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