Life In The Time Of COVID-19

Life In The Time Of COVID-19

“Life always waits for some crisis to occur before revealing itself at its most brilliant.”

Paulo Coelho

Most brilliant  ….??—Yes and No!

Living in times of unprecedented crisis like COVID-19 has challenged all possible dimensions of human nature- be it financial prowess, his physical strength, emotional composure, belief in one’s God or belief in one’s own status/power/skills or perseverance.

Where on one hand there are stories of unbelievable courage and goodness of human kind, on the other, there are instances , innumerable of loss, grief, destruction and hopelessness. Now we may say that life’s nature is such that it keeps oscillating between joy/sorrow, gain/loss, success/failure every now and then. So whatever we are witnessing…how is it any different??

From where I can see, the COVID-19 era is different because it just did not let the human race brace itself for the calamity to strike in terms of the overwhelming emotional and physical involvement in dealing with it; not to mention the herculean job of arranging the resources/skill set/ experts to not only decipher the nature of illness but also come up with an almost “divine” intervention to deal with the enemy which had struck us in the form of the virus.

The damage this “corona” did [and the danger of which is still looming large on human race with new mutations coming up every now and then threatening our very existence] in terms of losing loved ones, living in constant fear of losing loved ones, besides going through the horrors of trying to  arrange for medical help for ones down with it and hoping for their recovery , is something one will never be able to forget till the time of his or her existence. In fact, as an aftermath for people who have experienced the trauma of either falling prey to this virus or taking care of the ones who did, may stay longer than one could imagine; specially so if they are not seeking help for their mental well being.

No doubt that these COVID-19 times has led to a significant rise in psychological problems like depression, suicidal ideation, sleep disturbances, stress burnout or severe anxiety  in not only the ones who were dealing with it like doctors, police personnel, government officials or the ones undergoing it like the patients. But, besides the obvious repercussions of this health crisis, some not so evident effects of it impacting personal lives beyond pain of death and misery are also worth a discussion.

Its often said and believed that humans have a choice- ability to choose the actions they want to take- broadly speaking. But in COVID-19 times, they were not able to exercise it as freely as they would have wanted to. Not being able to go to their favourite restaurants, not allowed to travel and satisfy their wanderlust, going for shopping, clubbing and what not, at the drop of hat, almost stuck in boundaries of one’s home for days together with zilch socialization and recreation along with constant stress regarding well being of one’s known, added salt to the wounds. Probably for the first time, we realised that we can exist without these so called activities and escape routes for a considerable amount of time which have become such an integral part of our daily lives. But a truth which stared glaringly simultaneously was that how important it is to have our loved ones near us, friends and well wishers in our lives who we forget to acknowledge or mention in our mad race to reach to some imagined places of supposed greatness. Ask people who were stuck alone or were away from their loved ones in this time of crisis!!

Another belief which was put to test was that of love and understanding which is said to exist between couples, parents, friends, lovers and other such subunits of relationships. The “mayhem” this calamity caused did not restrict itself to dead, dying or ill-it also caused havoc for those living, breathing, trying to take care of the mundane- behind the curtains.

From breakdown of appropriate communication [especially for the families of the frontline workers who just could not find themselves spending any quality time with their families amidst this chaos], to not being able to vocalize and process one’s distressing emotions that of guilt, helplessness may be anger, underlying fears, professional pressures-all of it impacted the daily lives of people beyond comprehension.

Doubts regarding  whether our so called ‘loved ones’ truly understand our feelings to whether the life is really worth all the efforts one puts in planning, fighting for and being ridiculed at- are also the aspects that were not so brilliant about life revealing itself in terms of crisis I mentioned at the outset. At the same time, past few months also brought to the surface the darkness that lies beneath this Cloak of human skin, of which either we are not aware of, or we refuse to accept that it does exist. There have been instances which had most of us, if not all hang our heads in shame in calling ourselves humans as they signified to what monstrous depths we humans are capable of succumbing to in terms of finding monetary advantage, setting wrong narratives, even in the most difficult of times of human race in almost a century.

However, one thing that this COVID-19 era taught most of us has been to value our relationships and whatever we are blessed with. More than we ever do. —that all we have is “now”….that we need to take care of our body and mind alike—that we need to tell our loved ones that we care…that they are important….and most importantly…that we need to hang in—just breathe…and go easy on ourselves…that try living life…not just trying to plan and look at its problems..

That not to take anything for granted…ever-…not even the breath that comes and goes without our active observation— because don’t know when it could just leave us— and never come back.

Therefore it becomes pertinent to live our life with consciousness and gratitude, for it is no doubt brilliant- full of myriad experiences, provided we let it unfold at its own pace and not compete with it. That we accept its magnitude and power to make us kneel at its doorstep….whenever it wishes so…!!


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