Written By: Sarah Chase
Staying inside to stay safe is getting harder and harder for Americans. People are struggling to support themselves and their families as more citizens are filing for unemployment everyday. During these stressful times it’s hard for America to be hopeful, but Sadé Okayla and Ariana Javaheri have been making sure they try and make the best out of this experience. Both Okayla and Javaheri answer how they have been struggling yet striving to stay positive.
Sadé Okayla is 28 and is the designer behind
Orowa Assembly. She enjoys learning
languages and aspires to learn as many as she can.
How have you been spending your days at home during these hard times?
I have been spending my days at home really sitting with myself and doing a lot of inner work: addressing emotions that I haven’t been able to address pre-pandemic. The slower pace of life has also had me seriously considering what I really want my life to look like after this. Besides all the introspection, I have been doing all the things I did in my free time before (with plenty of rest in between of course). Learning languages (Korean and Arabic are my primary target languages right now), working on a crochet project, a bigger design project and plenty of reading. I eat and cook good food and workout most days to keep myself fit and sane.
Many people have been talking about how they are learning a lot about themselves and growing. What is something you have learned from quarantine?
Something I have learned from this pandemic is, how lucky I truly am to worry about little if anything during this time. I have a roof over my head, I live in a safe environment. I have food, I have the means of getting more and I’m still being paid. In a time like this, many people do not have these basic things.
Obviously many people around the world are having a hard time staying in a good mental state during the pandemic, but how are you trying to stay positive?
Honestly, It’s been hard to stay positive. My mum is a nurse, so I worry every time she goes to work. Especially when I hear first hand how the PPE situation is. I wonder if she will get sick. I wonder how it will affect her. I wondered and wondered when things were starting to get serious before the UK lockdown and I wondered some more for the two weeks after the lockdown was instated. Naturally, it proved unproductive to my mental health and general well being. So as cliche as it sounds, I do my best to stay present and take it a day at a time because there is little else I can do.
Teen to Teen was founded and is run by Ariana Javaheri! Javaheri is a junior in high school and founded Teen to Teen to create a "platform for our generation to express themselves and their concerns". She is also very passionate about women's health and is a huge advocate for those on the autism spectrum!
Everyone has a weakness that they must leave the house for! What is your weakness that you must go out and get if you could?
I would definitely leave the house for frozen yogurt!! My favorite flavors are cookies in cream & salted caramel. I have been craving it for weeks now, but unfortunately everywhere is temporarily closed!
Productivity is hard when all you can do is stay at home all day, but how are you trying to be productive?
Since quarantine, I’ve had more time to focus on my mental health and physical health as well. I’ve started exercising more than I usually do during the school year and I have also been giving myself time to self-reflect.
How are you striving to be positive during this pandemic?
Staying positive has been tricky for many of my peers, since a lot of them have focused on what they lost. However, I’ve been looking at what I gained and what opportunities I have now during this time. I have much more time for exercise, reading, family bonding, and most importantly self-care!!