A Day in the Life: Social Distancing with Abigail Ory


This quarantine has been an exercise in self-motivation. While I’m usually not the best at motivating, social distancing has given me little-to-no choice. Nobody was around to care if I did or didn’t do my work, so I had no other option besides working for my own sake.

It started out slow– in March, my biggest goal was to finish the semester in one piece. I put off dropping my debut EP indefinitely, unsure of when the right time would be to release my music (Remember when we thought the pandemic would last, at most, a couple of months? LOL.) As the days in isolation added up, so did my commitments. I set the new release date for October 7, 2020, so I suddenly needed to make a music video and two album covers. I’d also agreed to direct a feature-length film for a student comedy club called the Hasty Pudding. On top of all that, I had to balance a school workload and my library job. By the middle of the summer, I’d obviously gotten a handle on motivating myself to do things. I’d felt so motivated, in fact, I’d agreed to do more and more projects. Suddenly, the question wasn’t whether or not I could motivate myself to start a project, but whether or not I could motivate myself to stop and breathe.


The second half of quarantine has been filled with me working as hard as possible to find (or make) time for myself. Halloween was my first day off in months, and I spent it as well as I could during this pandemic. I started carving mini pumpkin jack-o-lanterns pretty much as soon as I woke up until I had a whole army of them lining my windowsill. I went for a long walk (it snowed in New England the day before so I got to see a great mix of fall leaves and fresh snow). That night, I watched Tim Burton’s Corpse Bride with my childhood friend and neighbor (we both can’t believe we watched that movie as kids… it’s pretty conceptually frightening).

Clearly, I’m still looking for that elusive work-life balance, but taking a day off was a good start. Even though I’ve spent all of today running errands, doing homework, and cleaning my room, my little army of jack-o-lanterns is here to remind me to stop and breathe every once in a while… it’s worth it.