The pandemic has taken over our lives and minds for sure and much has changed. But If I look around carefully, and compare with what I saw a decade ago, I see very few changes in nature. The same seasonal flowers have bloomed and leaves are still setting or falling. During the day, dense foliage is still offering shade to thirsty birds and their fledglings. And the sun is rising and setting as it always has.
So, what has really changed? Has the world become grim or are we, as humans, losing hope?
I feel the most prominent change impacting us is that we have become fearful. Loneliness, the urge to mingle, and the desire to go back to normalcy, have engulfed us severely. Those who are separated from their loved ones are now missing them more with each passing day. The air is heavy with anticipation and apprehension. All this has taken a toll on the way we think, behave and act.
The power to change and control situations has slipped out of our hands
Is this what’s making us feel helpless and irritated? We have been living on the edge for over a year now. The constant stress of losing out to the virus has destroyed the set pattern of thinking we were used to. Nothing is certain any longer and it is this uncertainty that is the biggest jolt that we have felt in recent times.
A few years ago, it was about nations fighting wars, playing strategic games or competing to be ahead in the race. Technology, hi-tech warfare, terrorism, global warming, international and domestic issues, financial crises, economic downturns and upturns kept us busy. Mind games were omnipresent, and media foul play was evident. But even amid the seeming chaos, we were not impacted so dearly and closely. Life went on despite air crashes, blasts, oil spills, accidents, political ‘mis-agendas’, election hypes and environmental issues taking centre stage.
We were safe. At least we could breathe.
Every breath these days seems to be a borrowed one with an expiry date
Breath counts, oxygen saturation levels, oximeter readings and cylinder refills have become looming truths. The life-giving gas may be coloured blue, but it has painted our world grey. This is despite global lockdowns wherein deforestation and felling of trees have taken a back seat. Ironically, the vital life giver is still prevalent in the atmosphere and freely available to all, at all times. Where we are falling short is in manufactured oxygen.
Today, a twenty-four-hour day seems to have become longer. Time is no longer flying like before. We are all stuck where we were a year or two ago. This is enough to make us lose hope. But that’s not how it should be. Where have we failed?
Even if all is lost, ‘nothing’ remains
For every shut door, another is open. Every tunnel will have light at its end. The darkest hour is bound to break into dawn. And as we all know, every tide that rises will also ebb. Nature is playing the balancing act and the hard way. We should not leave hope. Just as every epidemic, war, natural calamity or man-made disaster meets its end, so will this phase wane.
This curve will also flatten. It has to.
Very soon, we will find solutions to combat oxygen deficiencies. Very soon, our front-liners will figure out how to fight new and old strains and send more people home following successful recoveries. And very soon, there will be more joy than misery at homes, bazaars, offices, entertainment venues, hospitals, nursing homes and isolation centers. It is just a matter of time. Until then, we have to hold on to hope. We have to trust our medical research teams, doctors, nurses, volunteers and all those who have donned PPE kits to fight for our cause. We have to pray hard and harder until the Almighty says, “Okay guys, enough. Plot twist.”
Being grim is a choice; being happy is also a choice
We have to search for that one ray of hope in the gloomiest times. We have to rise from the dust to first stand tall and then start taking great strides. We cannot give up now. Certainly not after coming so far. We have to fight the situation till the end and prevail.
While many have joined the bandwagon to help, each one of us can do our bit by staying at home. The least we can do is pray and send out positive vibes from wherever we are. Positive thoughts attract positivity. Thoughts of happiness, trust and hope are bound to strengthen our mindset and immunity. So why should we embrace gloom when there is still a chance to be hopeful?
Why should we give in even before the battle is lost? Collectively, we can create a pulsating environment of optimism even in these most trying of times. The clouds that have gathered will disappear. This can happen, and will happen, but only if we try. So smile, it is a free therapy. Let’s get our chins high, straighten our tilted crowns and try to smile a little. Every moment of happiness will extrapolate like never before. Even the shortest smile will work to fade out the longest darkness that has enveloped us today.
I am already feeling better after penning these thoughts down. I wonder if you are feeling the same too after reading this. Let us all smile a bit. We still deserve to, right?