Gabriela Hatem, 25

With so much unknown about COVID-19, people are unable to plan for the future. Twenty-five-year-old Gabriela Hatem from Miami is having a tough time handling quarantine. After all, she already has a toddler and is expecting her second child in the upcoming weeks.

“I am 35 weeks pregnant, due in 5 weeks. I have no idea what the world is going to look like in five weeks,” she said.

“I don’t know if I am going to have a hospital bed ready for me when I get there and honestly, I’m scared to go to the hospital, but the thought of having the baby at home is also terrifying.They say you should have a birth plan but how do you plan during times like these?”

(Courtesy of Gabriela Hatem)

Hatem has a 3-year old daughter who, like most kids, has had to adjust to being home all day and not attending school. The transition has not been easy, according to Hatem.

“I had to spend $200 on stuff to keep her entertained. Finger paint, Play-doh, chalk, anything to keep her busy.”

Spending time outdoors has been a priority for many parents. It allows their kids to exhaust some energy. For Hatem however, being outdoors has become a difficult task this far along in her pregnancy. She tries to spend time outdoors with her daughter, but the high temperatures in Miami have caused her to faint multiple times.

“If my mom is not here to help me, we have to stay indoors, which my daughter does not like.” she said.

Finances have also been a worry for Hatem and her family. Hatem worked at a private school but was laid off when Miami-Dade County schools closed back in March.

“I had to cancel my baby shower, which means my boyfriend and I have to buy most things for the baby ourselves,” she said. “This is a big deal now that I do not have a job.”

Although Hatem is worried about what the future might bring she is also hopeful.

“I am excited to meet my new baby and to see my daughter become a big sister. I know the circumstances might be different but there is still a lot to look forward to, and that is what I try to remind myself when I begin to stress about the things I cannot change.”

Chabelis Leal is a student at Florida International University majoring in Broadcast Media. She has a passion for reporting and communicating with others in order to tell their stories. She hopes to one day be a news anchor and serve as a voice for the community of South Florida.