Examining Life’s Essence During the Covid 19 Pandemic
Crisis in life is inevitable. It comes in different forms. I’ve managed to endure much all through my life. As heard during my university days, it is the spice of life that can be compared to food. It needs different and contrasting ingredients to satisfy our palates. To ensure what we eat is healthy, every ingredient that we add to our food should just be in the right proportion. Therefore, life should be like that; it should be balanced.
The crisis of this lingering pandemic has caught us unprepared. The Covid 19 felt distant to my family at the beginning. It was something that we just watched on our television, listened to on our radio, and saw on our social media news feeds. It did not affect us personally until the first case of Covid-19 was reported in the Philippines on 20th, January 2020. Things started to change gradually and now has become a more difficult task than we ever imagined. Classes were suspended on the 2nd week of March. We thought it would just be for few days. Unfortunately, those few days has turned into weeks as the government no longer allows gatherings of large groups of people. The school year 2019-2020 would not close in the way we expected. We are as if in our global village facing the onslaught of ‘Angel of death’ with no cure. The war machines of the world are obsolete
I can describe my life as in a constant state of impatience before this Covid 19. It has changed everything. My busy mind has always been looking ahead. I anticipated, prepared for, and fantasized about upcoming days and months for 2020. But my plans are all ripped off by the Covid 19 pandemic. For a while, my vision was clouded with uncertainties and worries that were fueled by the gruesomeness of disasters that had been happening in my country. I am with so many questions and my heart is aching seeing how the pandemic makes life miserable. The common question everyone asks is “When will this end?” But no one knows exactly when this pandemic will end. From time to time, I put away all the negative thoughts to relax my mind. It is something that I do not have the power to control. Blaming the cause of this pandemic serves no purpose. I begin to realize everything continues to move forward despite the difficulties and so I must act responsibly too.
Amid the chaos that this pandemic has brought, my family and I found ways to find alternative ways to continue what we had been doing before. Although, movements are restricted especially to those people like my mom, a fragile woman in her sixties. This does not prevent her from attending the church mass. Television, Facebook and Youtube live streams have become our avenues to strengthen our faith and connection with God. At work, even my colleagues and I could no longer report to school physically, we were compelled to do our communication and connection through Zoom meetings, Google Meets, and other applications. This pandemic has not stopped us from growing professionally. A proliferation of webinars has started since the community quarantine was implemented and professionals have been given the chance to participate and apply the newly learned skills virtually.
My plans did not materialize this year and I think I am not alone. I have learned to accept it by and by. I am determined to live through the present. The future is still unclear and the ‘now’ is what matters the most. These days, if I search for movies online – it is for my mom and I to watch after we have cleaned the house. When I look for recipes, it is for us to savor within a specified meal of the day. When I turn on my laptop, it is to fulfill my duties with my students. When I disconnect my gadgets, it is to connect with my siblings and play with my nephew and niece.
Among the anecdotes of triumphs and failures, among the experiences of people narrated on social media during this Covid 19 pandemic, I gained new nuggets of wisdom. Life is fragile and we should cherish it. While others are gasping for air, wishing for an extension of their life, here I am narrating my personal story. God made me realize how imbalanced my life was before and this pandemic serves as an eye opener for me to be thankful to everything that I have now.
This article was submitted as an entry on the 1st Annual Everywhere Heroes Contest for Literature by Everywhere Heroes Inc and Philippine Board on Books for Young Peoplen last November 30, 2020.