I Waited 3 Months For A Desk Because Of COVID & It Turned Out To Be The Perfect Metaphor For 2020

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Woman sitting at her desk in the dark
Self

It’s no secret that COVID rewrote the book on normalcy in the United States.

Whether it’s work, relationships, or something as convenient and simple as online shopping, the pandemic changed every aspect of our lives, and will likely have a trickle-down effect spanning well into the next decade.

In the beginning of the pandemic, when state-wide lockdowns were just starting to take place, many Americans took what we all thought would be a short lockdown as an invitation to explore new hobbies, like bread-making, art, or fitness. 

I, on the other hand, went a different route when it came to pandemic hobbies, and decided that if I was going to be holed up inside my one-room tiny house for the foreseeable future, I needed to make sure my place was exactly how I wanted it to look. 

Interior design wasn’t a totally new hobby for me, though. 

I’ve always been interested in anything in the realm of home decor, design, aesthetics — basically, if you can center a show around it on HGTV, I’m into it. 

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I’ve also always taken tremendous pride in my living space. And since I considered myself a bonafide homebody even before the pandemic hit, it just made sense to finally take the time to really build the home of my dreams from the inside out. 

I didn’t have a ton of huge updates to do inside my house; the two main items I wanted to replace were my couch and a desk I got nearly 5 years ago. While my desk looked cool and totally added to the eclectic design of my house, it was wildly impractical for someone who sits in front of a computer for nine hours a day.

In the past, when I wanted or needed to order something online, it arrived in a timely manner. 

But as we all experienced during The Great Toilet Paper Shortage Of April 2020, COVID threw a wrench in everything retail — both in person and online

So when I finally got around to ordering a new desk for myself, I expected some sort of delay on its delivery. It truly didn’t shock me that when I hit the “complete order” button, my desk would take a week or two to get here — and that was totally understandable, considering the unprecedented circumstances every retailer was experiencing. 

But then, two weeks went by. Then three. Then four.

I kept checking on my order, making sure it went through correctly and the company I ordered from did, in fact, receive my order. Sure enough, it was there, still being prepared for shipment. 

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I’m not a pushy person in general. If I’m at a restaurant and the mashed potatoes I ordered with my meal comes out with chives on them instead of on the side, I won’t say anything. If someone cuts in front of me in line at the grocery store, I’ll let it slide. 

Again, given the times we’re currently living in, I didn’t rush to air my grievances with customer service about the desk I ordered a month prior — especially with more important issues happening in the world.

I’m a bit of a dichotomy, though: I’m an impatient person, but I’ll wait. I’m extremely opinionated, but I carefully pick my battles. 

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However, after more than two months had gone by and there was no update on when my desk would arrive, I began to get restless and irritated — like much of the country in 2020.

And after nearly three months with no update on the piece of furniture that I had ordered a season prior, I was downright annoyed and angry — again, like much of the country in 2020. 

Here’s the thing, though: it eventually showed up on my doorstep. After months of waiting, months of uncertainty, months of an orchestra of negative emotions playing the same sad symphony on a seemingly never-ending loop, that desk finally made it to its destination: me.

And in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic that’s been ravaging the world since late 2019, that desk served as one of the greatest metaphors of 2020, and will carry on well into 2021 — and if I’m being realistic, probably the years beyond. 

Things may be slow right now. Things are not normal. Things will take time to sort, to process, to deliver. 

But that doesn’t mean there isn’t an end result in sight. However far off it may be — whether it’s a month, three months, a year or two — slowly, but surely, your version of a desk will show up on your doorstep.

And you’ll be glad you waited. 

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Olivia Jakiel is an editor and writer who covers celebrity and entertainment news. Follow her on Instagram and keep up with her zingers on Twitter