+
upworthy
Health

People shared the important lessons of the pandemic. Here are 21 of the most cathartic.

It changed how we worked, socialized and saw humanity.

covid-19, pandemic lessons, ask reddit
via Pixabay

People are sharing the lessons of the pandemic.

Two-and-a-half years after the COVID-19 pandemic came to America, things are slowly returning to normal. Although people are still catching the virus, the seven-day average of deaths is around 15% of where we were at the pandemic’s peak. Lockdowns and mask mandates are over, kids are all back at school and there’s a definite feeling that the worst is behind us.

The last 30 months have been a time of anxiety, loneliness, fear, sickness, death, misinformation, and political and economic upheaval. Over that time, most of us were forced to change how we worked, socialized and learned. Even as the pandemic winds down, we live in a world that will never return to what it was like before the virus.

Now’s the time to try to make sense of what we’ve all been through so that if there’s a next time, we know how to do things better.

A Reddit user by the name Affectionate-Ad1060 asked the online forum, “What is the most important lesson learnt from Covid-19?” and they received more than 19,000 responses.


Some thought that the pandemic taught them the importance of being around people. Others realized that maintaining one’s mental health isn’t just about resilience.

A lot of people were discouraged by how incredibly selfish some acted during the pandemic. Many were surprised by the number of people who put their political beliefs ahead of the health of themselves and others.

A lot of our norms and assumptions about society have been significantly challenged over the past two and a half years. The only way that we can create a feeling of hope that things will be better the next time is to examine the lessons learned from COVID-19 so we can be better.

Here are 21 of the most important lessons that people learned from COVID-19.

1. 

"No matter how strong and resilient you think you are, your mental health can be penetrated without you realizing it." — Lentewiet

2. 

"You should take the time to spend with those you love." — idontworktomorrow

3. 

"That it wouldn’t take much for civilized people to turn on each other." — hindmaja

Strength-in-the-Loins added:

"A wise man once said something like 'Humanity is perpetually 9 meals away from utter barbarism."

JimmyHammer12 really put the nail on the head with their response:

"It could also be said based on the way people went FOMO for all that toilet paper that 'Humanity is perpetually 9 rolls away from utter barbarism.'"

4.

"People's mental health ain't no joke... people need people." — vg4030

5. 


"Pandemic was just the proverbial group project in school all over again. A couple of intelligent and hard-working people trying to keep everything from falling apart while the rest sit on their ass or choose to straight up sabotage everything. Yet somehow everyone gets the exact same grade." — NaughtyProwler

6. 

"Bold of you to assume we’ve learned anything." — Airsoft07

7. 

"Healthcare needs a overhaul." — Toxic_Politician

8. 

"The extent to which politicians will sell out public health for their political advantage is much higher than I thought. Usually, life or death situations are good for all politicians, just be a voice of stability and hope and you’re good. We all pull together and get through it. This time, dividing us intentionally to cause chaos? I still can’t believe real people did that." — Griswald

9. 

"Most schools weren't as ready to switch to digital methods as they bragged about." — SenpaisReisShop

10. 

"Most grown adults are nasty and have to be reminded to wash their hands." — shantyirish13

11. 

"The 'supply chain' is far leaner and vulnerable to the vagaries of pandemic conditions than most had thought." — Back2Bach

12. 

"You can have all the free time in the world and still manage to do nothing with it." — hogaway

13. 

"We need to teach statistics and critical thinking better." — hardsoft

14. 

"I work in childcare. We learned that children really need socialization. You would think with time off parents would work on things. Kids came back to daycare, not potty trained, still using a pacifier, speech behind, and refusing to share. It's better now but it was really interesting seeing a child pre-Covid who you potty trained…. Come back months later acting pretty helpless. don’t know if it’s parents, the lack of social pressure, or just some other thing. But it was an interesting experience." — Paceim

15. 

"People are willing to die over politics." — morinthos

16.

"That 50% of jobs can be done from home while the other 50% deserve more than they're being paid." — Kayin_Angel

17. 

"That being tied to the office, working insane hours, super long commutes are not necessary." — squashedfrog

18. 

"People make irrational decisions when afraid." — AaaON_

19. 


"During covid, I was laid off for months and spent that whole time keeping up to date on everything going on in the world. I mean everything I possibly could, every single day. I reached the point of obsession and the massive amount of negative crushed me. There was so much bad going on so much suffering that eventually, one day I just set it all down and said I'll check in in a month. Best decision I made that year, the only thing that kept my sanity. Just taking time away and not bathing in it every day." — Primerallen

20. 

"People will listen to politicians over their doctors." — GhostalMedia

21. 

"A decent amount of people I work with surprised me a lot during the pandemic. People I used to have some respect for revealed themselves as complete idiots. It was really sobering." — RiW-Kirby

Family

Woman goes to huge lengths to adopt husband's ex-wife's baby to save him from foster care

She had lived in foster care and didn't want it for the newborn with no name.

Christie Werts and her son, Levi


Christie and Wesley Werts have taken the idea of a blended family to the next level. When the couple fell in love five years ago and married, they brought together her children, Megan and Vance, and his children, Austin and Dakota.

As of January, the Ohio family has five children after adopting young Levi, 2. Levi is the son of Wesley’s ex-wife, who passed away four days after the child was born. The ex-wife had the boy prematurely, at 33 weeks, and died soon after from drug addiction and complications of COVID-19.

When Levi was born, he was a ward of the state with no first name or birth certificate.

Keep ReadingShow less

Jennifer Garner ad father William John Garner starring in a Capital One commercial.

Grief and gratitude might seem to be in opposition to the other, but in times of loss, they both work in tandem to help us process our pain. As the “Ten Percent Happier” blog eloquently puts it, “grief embodies our humanity even as gratitude allows us to embrace pain and hardship.”

Actress Jennifer Garner recently gave a poignant example of this.

On April 1, the “Alias” star took to her Instagram page to share the news that her father, William John Garner, died “peacefully” in the afternoon on March 30.

Though her tribute expressed the loss she felt, it made plenty of space for humor and appreciation for the precious memories she got to create with her “kind and brilliant” dad.

Keep ReadingShow less

How often should you wash your jeans?

Social media has become a fertile breeding ground for conversations about hygiene. Whether it’s celebrities bragging about how little their family bathes or battles over how often people should wash their sheets or bras.

One of the debates that gets the most diverse responses is how often people wash their denim jeans.

Denim atelier Benjamin Talley Smith tells Today that jeans should be washed "as little as possible, if at all.” Laundry expert Patric Richardson adds they should be cleaned “after nine or 10 wearings, like to me, that is the ideal." At that point, they probably have stains and are "a little sweaty by that point, so you need to wash 'em," Richardson says.

Still, some people wash and dry them after every wear while others will hand wash and never hang dry. With all these significant differences of opinion, there must be a correct answer somewhere, right?

Keep ReadingShow less
Identity

Formerly enslaved man's response to his 'master' wanting him back is a literary masterpiece

"I would rather stay here and starve — and die, if it come to that — than have my girls brought to shame by the violence and wickedness of their young masters."

A photo of Jordan Anderson.

In 1825, at the approximate age of 8, Jordan Anderson (sometimes spelled "Jordon") was sold into slavery and would live as a servant of the Anderson family for 39 years. In 1864, the Union Army camped out on the Anderson plantation and he and his wife, Amanda, were liberated. The couple eventually made it safely to Dayton, Ohio, where, in July 1865, Jordan received a letter from his former owner, Colonel P.H. Anderson. The letter kindly asked Jordan to return to work on the plantation because it had fallen into disarray during the war.

On Aug. 7, 1865, Jordan dictated his response through his new boss, Valentine Winters, and it was published in the Cincinnati Commercial. The letter, entitled "Letter from a Freedman to His Old Master," was not only hilarious, but it showed compassion, defiance, and dignity. That year, the letter would be republished in theNew York Daily Tribune and Lydia Marie Child's "The Freedman's Book."

The letter mentions a "Miss Mary" (Col. Anderson's Wife), "Martha" (Col. Anderson's daughter), Henry (most likely Col. Anderson's son), and George Carter (a local carpenter).

Dayton, Ohio,
August 7, 1865
To My Old Master, Colonel P.H. Anderson, Big Spring, Tennessee

Keep ReadingShow less
Family

A 9-year-old goes in on standardized tests and ends with the best mic drop of all time.

When 9-year-old Sydney Smoot stood up at her local school board meeting, I doubt they expected this kind of talking to.



If you need proof standardized testing is setting students up for failure, just ask the students.

Sydney Smoot has a bone to pick with the Hernando County School Board. The issue? The Florida Standards Assessment Test, or FSA for short. On March 17, 2015, Sydney bravely stood up at her local school board meeting to share how she felt about the test and why she believes it's failing students and teachers.

Keep ReadingShow less
Science

2 monkeys were paid unequally; see what happens next

Sometimes you get the grapes; other times it's just cucumber.

Image pulled from YouTube video.

A study on fairness packs a punch.

True
Workonomics



This is short, but it definitely packs a punch.

Be sure to pay close attention from 1:34 to 2:06; it's like equal parts "America's Funniest Home Videos" and "Econ 101."

Keep ReadingShow less