I spent more than 50 days of quarantine in Italy. I struggled everyday with my own existence in a place so empty to me, so foreign that even words felt cumbersome. I was living and working in the home of a family that spoke Italian. Even my thoughts betrayed me as I guiltily redirected them to my role there, my work. Nothing could match the circles of uncertainty that washed over my being. Laying day and night between blank walls of that room that I could not change because it wasn’t mine. Scared to make a mistake because it was my work that kept me there. Everyday it was the large window in my room that helped ground me. Looking at the clouds gave me hope, and as they turned pink in the sunset, I knew my day would come. The birds that beckoned in the early morning brought the gift of sound, and variance. The flowers, watered and cared for brought color, blazing when the sun hit them. The lights that flicked on after 6pm in the ocean of surrounding apartments reminded me that I could have a life of my own someday. It was these yearnings that inspired my drawing, a depiction of everything that created my hope during quarantine all brought into the walls of that empty room.
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