Not A 'Blessing' In Disguise, Just A Compelling Eye-opener

I heard somebody said that the unsolicited emergence of COVID-19 infection can be seen as a ‘blessing’ in disguise because it reveals the desideratum for some health reforms. I’ve read it from newspaper headlines alongside the bigger reports of new cases skyrocketing to at least 3,000 - 5,000 per day. For me, the remark sounds a bit insensitive and inconsiderate, especially for people who were forcibly pushed to a very miserable situation due to ongoing pandemic. We can’t say that it’s a blessing (even in disguise) while there are millions of people getting sick, dying, losing their jobs, and starving. The perfect term, perhaps, that we can use to describe this COVID-19 mess-up is “eye-opener.” What’s happening in the world right now is indeed a compelling eye-opener for everyone. 

In the past few months of enduring the upshot of this armageddon, I have come to realize that too much harmony made us blind to some important things in life. I will admit that before— when the world was still in perfect unison— I barely cared about what's happening around me. Watching news and reading articles were not my top priorities. I was nonchalant about a lot of things because my focus was set only to those that have a direct impact on me. I was not fully aware that the thingamabobs I shut my eyes to were actually playing a great role in my overall stability. 


In a span of about 2-4 months under fluctuating quarantine restrictions, COVID-19 was able to open my eyes to everything I failed to learn in the past 20 years of my life. Even if it was hard at first, I still continued to perceive the stay-at-home policy as an opportunity to walk through my timeline and see the bigger pictures. I think, this is the perfect season to reflect on ourselves and somehow change for the better. 

Now, I’ll be sharing some of the things I learned from this pandemic. I hope that after I shared these with you, you’ll consider seeing life in a different looking-glass. 

  • Some good time alone— away from the relentless world— is actually nice.

While unforgettable memories intensify our longing for normalcy, and the restrictions are driving us so crazy, I found a more wonderful and humane world in solidarity. We all deserve to have a break from everything that tearing us apart. And the best time, I think, is right now. 

  • We always love to underestimate a situation. 

“Come what may” became a huge part of our culture, but now we see that it’s also the most dangerous decision we could ever make. We always tend to ignore things unless it’s already creating damages to our lives. We only get encouraged to take action when it’s already too late. Agree? 

  • The judgemental world becomes much more judgemental.

Who won’t? We don’t know who’s infected and who is not. So if you’re running some errands in a public place, it’s best to hold your cough and sneeze until you get home because even if it’s just an allergic reaction, people would instantly think you’re poz. You might become subject of discrimination straight away without given a chance to explain your hypersensitivity condition. Yes, everyone’s instincts grow more sensitive now. And being judgemental becomes our number one defense mechanism in this battle against COVID-19. But I appeal to everyone, please never discriminate. Keep yourself safe but not in a way that somebody will feel uncomfortable and get hurt. 

  • Even it’s stressful sometimes, having a decent job today is a gift.

The ongoing pandemic has already claimed thousands of jobs around the world, leaving millions of people in the woe of hunger and impoverishment. So if you have a job today, especially when your company allowed the work-from-home setup, close your eyes for a while and thank God for it. It’s really a wonderful gift from up above. Imagine, you’re able to earn money without risking your life outside.  

  • If you’re able to cope with the new normal, it’s because of the internet.

Enduring the pandemic without the internet? I couldn’t imagine how it’s going to look like. Well, the people during the deadly Spanish Flu in 1921 were able to keep up, but us who have already become dependent on the internet, I don’t think we’re going to make it as much as they did. For sure, there won’t have a systematic flow of information that is conducive to our fight, and many people will get extremely distressed due to the feeling of unconnectedness to the outside world. It’s going to be an extremely horrible chapter for us all. So thank God for the internet even if it often makes us work at a very slow pace.  


Listen, Everyone

We’re all prisoners right now. No matter how much we try, we can’t go back for a while to the kind of routine we used to live in. And this is certainly not a blessing for us. We all want a normal life. Traffic hassle, exposure to road pollution, long walks to the office— these are the problems we were facing before, and I didn’t expect that I’m going to miss them one day. If I have to choose, I would rather endure this kind of lifestyle than locking myself at home. You too?  

Photo Credit: Jeremy Stenuit