Lifted mask mandates improving communication, moods

Due to lifted mask mandates, people are finding comfort in seeing people without them.

Since the recent lifting of mask mandates, students and teachers are finding it easier to connect with friends and family in the community.
“It really boosts my mood,” sophomore Jaden Knize said.
Without the masks, there is a more positive outlook on connecting with others.
“I like looking at people’s mouths when they talk,” English teacher Megan Good said.
Good said that it’s nice to see people’s faces and makes communicating easier, especially from a teacher’s standpoint of constantly interacting with students and talking to them daily.
“It makes it easier to tell who’s actually talking as opposed to having to figure out who said what behind a mask,” Good said.
Not having the ability to differentiate between students talking made it more difficult to connect with students and took away from the social aspect of learning at school.
Not only does communication improve, seeing people’s whole faces is something that students look forward to when they are at school.
“It’s weird seeing peoples’ full faces without the masks,” sophomore Olivia Forbes said. “After a year, it’s much easier to tell who is who.”
Seeing people’s faces is a mood-booster. “It’s almost like we’re back to normal from before COVID,” Forbes said.
After being behind masks for so long, students and teachers found it strange to not see what someone’s full-face looks like.
“People look way different than I expected,” Forbes said.
After making friends over quarantine and getting used to the masks, recognition was more difficult for some.
Now that mandates are being lifted, it is much easier to recognize unfamiliar faces.
“I like that we can recognize people way easier and see what their full faces look like,” sophomore Sam Gerhart said.
Conversations became much easier.
“You can see the whole bottom of people’s faces, which makes for much easier communication,” Gerhart said.
The transition from strict mask mandates, to them being lifted has been different for many people.
Some find it easier.
Others are still using caution when finding a time and place to allow themselves to take off their masks.
“For some, it’s been easier than others, who did not wear masks,” Good said.
Good said that it felt “weird.”
“This is my first week without a mask, so last week was a little awkward,” Good said.
Although there have been mixed feelings about the lifting of the mask mandates, Knize said that overall, being able to connect with others allows for a more “human connection” and that seeing people has really given him a feeling of happiness.
Seeing people’s faces means that “you can’t hide the zits anymore,” Good said, which was “painful” at first, but it is one step closer to normal.