This time last year, we were still standing six feet apart and trying to navigate the novelty of a vaccine passport. We’ve come a long way since then. After much preparation, classrooms have reopened, as have gyms, bars, theatres and dance clubs. People are congregating again with only a few precautions remaining in place. It’s been a period of transition, and it has tested our resilience and ability to adapt to rapid and tumultuous change. Yet here we are, maskless, on the other side.
Without a doubt, COVID-19 has reshaped the world as we once knew it. Nothing is really as it was before. Welcome to “the new normal” – a world where adjustments must be made to move forward without losing the gains we have acquired over the past two and a half years. This describes many of the stories you are about to read here, in The York University Magazine. From processing grief and learning how to live with a disability to a musician’s return to touring and people permanently altering their relationships with tech, the Fall 2022 issue brims with examples of how people confronted with sudden change have found ways to adapt to the upheaval, often rediscovering happiness or a sense of purpose along the way.
The pandemic is behind a lot of it. But rather than focusing on the immediate effects of the health crisis, these stories of transition are more about living with its long-term or even permanent effects. It takes optimism and no small amount of courage to see beyond the obstacles put in our path. The alumni you will encounter here have both in spades. It’s what makes their push toward normal feel so inspiring: if they can do it, so can we. ■