The pandemic, by far, has forced us to make tremendous changes in our lives. It continues to limit us from the usual things we do and love – nearly making us immobile outside our homes. Sometimes, even just the thought of going out to meet our friends and relatives can become a struggle. Clearly, if there is one thing that the pandemic has taken from us, apart from almost everything, it’s the freedom to go to places free from worries.
So, when we see the end of this pandemic, whenever that may be, we can safely assume that people will step out of their houses. People would breathe air with no masks on, hug and greet neighbors, and finally enjoy sipping tea at a coffee shop without worrying about the consequences we may need to face afterward.
In 2020, we see lockdowns and health protocols imposed as small prices to pay for our safety. Back then, no one knew how long it would take before things go back to normal. Fast forward to 2021, things became a little bit clearer that we won’t be back to our ways anytime soon. But thanks to medical advancements that have brought us vaccines and answers to the hardest questions ever asked, we now have better chances of fighting the pandemic – with the end goal of irradicating it entirely.
But maybe we don’t have to dwell in the past and hold on to the idea of going back to normal. Perhaps we can devote our efforts and energy towards living with it. Maybe, as a collective, our best chance lies in the choices we take now. The choice to wear a mask and face shield whenever we step out. The choice to observe social distancing and wash our hands whenever possible. The kind gestures we give out to the people tirelessly working to serve us. People who deliver our food and packages, and the simple acts of being considerate towards others.
When all these things are observed and followed by everyone, we make a move. We get closer to our end goal. How we were before may no longer be what matters the most. It may be too high a price now, but wouldn’t we do what we need to heal as one? We have said it before, and we will say it again; it starts with us. Our actions, individually, affect our future as a nation – as a race.
So, while we can’t help but think about the things we’ll do post-pandemic, let’s ask ourselves first; what are we doing, really, to get there? Are we contributing as part of the solution? Or are we just punching through the situation to push for what we want to do – risking not just ourselves but also others around us?
Compassion should prevail in times of uncertainty and distress. We are all tired but, without a shadow of a doubt, we can win this war against this unseen enemy. While we observe our due diligence individually, we should remember that only with collective efforts can we truly heal, and in this fight, no one should be left behind.