If life ever goes back to “normal” … no more face masks, no more panic, no more infections…
It’s hard to say if life will ever go back to “normal.” The most promising news we have heard so far is that vaccination has begun, but even still, can we really rely on these rushed vaccines to save the day? Will COVID ever be defeated, or come back to haunt us every flu season? Will it ever, at the very least, be managed in a more controllable way? Will it mutate and strike back even worse in the future? Will we be wearing face masks forever? So many questions…
Even if life ever goes back to “normal,” or the world reaches a point where COVID is under greater control, I think it would be ignorant of us to move on from this traumatic event pretending nothing ever happened…
I do think that everything happens for a reason — with the greatest pain, can also bring the greatest blessings. This is not to minimize the suffering, but to say that we can learn from this. As each person was affected differently, and we all went through unique experiences from one another, we all may have dissimilar conclusions. This is how my perspective has changed…
This pandemic has made me reconsider many things.
- Freedom — In some ways, I have learned to value my freedom. Certain rights I can no longer take for granted, and I’ll appreciate them more once restrictions are lifted. Yet in other ways, I have also understood the value of a lack of freedom. Rules may be used for suppression, but may also be used to vital protection. The price of freedom is not always worth the well-being of your safety and others.
- Health — I’m thinking about my health more. Hand-washing and basic hygienic practices are common sense but I believe they can only take you so far. What really matters is getting enough nutrition. I’m really trying to eat more fruits and vegetables from here on, and not just frozen or powdered/drink forms. Although that’s still good, and vitamins can be good too, nothing beats biting into a raw fruit or vegetable. I’m also thinking of my protein, calcium, and so on.
- Travel — I believe once travel ban is lifted, A LOT of people will be traveling. I hope through this pandemic that society will finally stop glamorizing traveling and actually realize how unhealthy it can be. Traveling should be prioritized for visiting family and loved ones, not just for having fun and taking vacation. Traveling is also detrimental to the environment. Work and business should not require traveling the way it does when we have access to so much technology and you can easily communicate with other companies through phones, internet, webcams, etc. For those who enjoy traveling to expand their mind and learn new things, I’m not condemning this, but advising precaution. People who feel slightly ill, even “just a cold” should reconsider their travel plans every time.
- Social distancing — we should be more aware of the germs we spread to one another. The “polite handshake” with a stranger is actually not so polite to the immune system! Touching family members you see every day, or people you live with, is acceptable. But we shouldn’t be going around touching strangers. Even your co-workers you see every day, you shouldn’t be going around hugging them or breathing on top of one another. Mind your personal space. You should always be keeping healthy distances from people. Even now during the midst of a pandemic I still see people getting too close to each other and it makes me uncomfortable. I know it may “feel good” to be touchy with people, but you have to think about germs and health.
- Lifestyle — right before lockdown I ironically told myself I was going to stay in more and go out less. And then lockdown happened and you’re probably thinking “great timing, how convenient…” but I swear it was unrelated before I knew! Of course being “forced” to stay in feels worse than it being my choice. But adjustment to quarantine lifestyle has confirmed that I am happier staying in more. I’m not saying we should all stay inside 24/7 and live life in fear. But going out all the time feels unnecessary. I have really been rethinking all my concert-going with The Ugly Reality of Music Festivals. And I never really liked bars too much unless there was dancing. But getting all sweaty in a crowded room full of strangers feels very unappealing now, I think I’d rather just dance in my room. Or maybe at a dance class where you’re all spaced out. And never been a fan of going to restaurants, although I do miss museums and galleries. Hiking/nature walks are great, and crazy to think even that was forbidden at one point.
Of course my number one priority is that I want people to be healthy again. Flatten the curve. Flatten all the COVID curves.
I understand why mask-wearing is important, but I have to say how annoying it is, especially with an active job. Running errands is no big deal, but wearing one at work all day when I’m on my feet all day is rough. So I am seriously looking forward to the day they lift mask-wearing — if ever?!?!
But when it comes to everything else, I believe it would be better if we all stay cautious. Don’t pretend a pandemic never happened. It was a wakeup call. It told us that our “normal” way of living was actually “not so normal” after all. It told us that the way we live is not health-conscious enough. This goes further than hand-washing, because I’m hoping we were all hand-washing before this — this is about the excessive traveling and going out, all the germ-spreading we’ve been getting away with for so long. Please don’t use a vaccine as an excuse to remain comfortable in your old ways. Many will argue with me on this, but I don’t think we ever should go “back to normal.”
We read about all the pandemics in our history books but we thought modern medicine could outsmart any new virus. We even watched movies and shows about viruses as “entertainment” which has now become a harsh reality. It’s hard to say what the future will bring, if it will get better or worse. Certainly do have hope. The news warns COVID may be here forever on some level, or that a much deadlier virus could take over, or that we will never be able to go “back to normal.” Do not live your life in fear, but be smart and conscious.
I do hope the pandemic comes to a final end as soon as possible. And when it does, I hope no one forgets what we all went through, and I hope that we can use this traumatic event as a catalyst for better change. Or else history repeats itself.