The quarantine chronicles: Week forty

Published December 25, 2020, 11:35 PM

by Alex M. Eduque


Alex Eduque
Alex Eduque

I write this on Christmas morning in a little corner on my dining table as Christmas wrapper, ribbons, and undelivered gifts have taken over most. This past week has been pandemonium. Considering that I spent months on end at home, I procrastinated more than ever in the end. And then there is a pile of unopened presents and Christmas cards waiting to be read and appreciated across from me – a reminder, that amidst the chaos and frenzy that has been, there is a whole lot to be grateful and thankful for. Considering I woke up to the news of quite a strong earthquake this morning, and another one just an hour ago, I am quite calm and feel more blessed than ever. I am healthy and alive typing this. Rang in the Christmas with my loved ones all happy and strong. That is more than enough right? Or is that the effect of 2020 on all of us? Nothing can shake us up any more – not even a rockin’ Christmas morning.

And so as far as holiday plans go, only Christmas Eve dinner was set in stone. Right now, I do not even know what plans for New Year’s Eve next week are. This would have been unheard of in 2019, but I guess, as this year showed us, we must all take things a day at a time. After all, this was the year where plans were cancelled or at the very least put on a halt. It was a year of one curve ball after the other. Tough decisions and calls, hard conversations, and learning to adjust and accept what is. We may have sulked a little about what could have been, but we also found the most joy in what became. God knew what was in our hearts, and this year, His plans, above all, came to fruition.

I learned a lot of who I was this year. I thought I had already known, but the past few months have shown me transformation – how I have grown, what matters now, and how there is still a lot about myself I will continue to discover in the years to come. Going with the flow of 2020 taught me a lot about prayer, faith, and surrendering. And that sacrifice yields reward when you expect it the least. This year showed me a lot of who I really am, versus who I thought I was, and has shaped me to work toward the person I aspire to be, sans illusions and unrealistic goals. This year was one great teacher who taught me what I am willing to accept and what I no longer need to tolerate. The choices are ours to make, and we live with the consequences of those decisions. Life is what we make of it. Every moment exists for us to seize, explore, and transform into a new opportunity of possibilities.

It is not yet over, but at this point, I feel like we have all become unshakeable. We are more resilient than we know. It has been humbling. It has been a poignant example of how life as we know it – with a comfortable routine we have established through the years – or our sense of normalcy can change overnight. Ironically, it is also the year when what my most vulnerable self was capable of overcoming. I have 2020 to thank in teaching me that despite the challenges, the rawest version of ourselves is capable of not only merely surviving, but rising above what we once knew, moving forward and maybe even thriving. We all found our niche and support systems this year – may we stay in them, and hold on to them like the most precious gems the earth has gifted us.

Perspective. That is what 2020 has shown us all. And before moping and grieving about what we may have lost this year, let us also remember that in losing, we have gained. A lot of closed books open new ones. It has been a distressingly beautiful year if we choose to see it as such. As this chapter comes to a close, let us await and embrace the new set of 365 days to come. Let us keep on going, keep on searching for the glimmer of hope, even in the darkest corners. Let us continue to write our stories of faith, strength, and resilience.

Here is to facing a new year more ready than ever. Merry Christmas, everyone!