Take two 

Published April 17, 2021, 12:21 AM

by Alex M. Eduque

Alex Eduque
Alex Eduque

Needless to say, the imposition of Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) – whether it was last year, or this year’s take two – always provokes panic, induces anxiety, heightens emotions and garners disgruntled members of society airing their sentiments amongst friends, on social media, and on group chats. All of a sudden, just like clockwork, Viber and Whatsapp groups are active once again, and news tidbits – assumptions, unverified information, opinions misconstrued as fact that has gone down the line of broken telephone – are being passed around like wild fire. We are on edge, to say the very least, and perhaps, a sense of trauma for some, after a very long period of confinement last year, has come to haunt them once again. Whatever your feelings are, remember, they are valid. Feel them, and allow yourself time to process and cope. After all, you now have time in your hands… again!

This time around, at least for me, I had some sort of idea on what to expect. That however, does not change the fact that there were still moments of let down and when fear of the uncertain had overcome. But then again, I more or less knew how to cope. I knew the situation was out of my hands, and worrying about it would just get me riled up, but nowhere, really. Rather, I decided that my sanity was priority. After all, it is what ensures wellness and well-being too, and a year later, we know now more than ever that health, is most definitely wealth.

I was reminded yet again of how differently people act, react and cope. How both ends of the spectrum are so evident – some have become so enveloped in fear that stepping out of their door to get sheer sunlight has become considered high risk, and is enough to freak them out, while others, are carefree, and have decided to live life with minimum health standards. Yet both, are equally valid, and must be respected. Life today is but a reminder that at the end of it all, what matters most is the precaution you take on a daily basis – not only for yourself, but for your household, elderly, and loved ones. And that a year later, you still have some sneaky people who try to inflict fear and panic by passing around lockdown notices from a year ago. At the end of the day, whatever it is you need to do to make sure you are okay, do it.

And then of course, there is that barrage of messages from small businesses I had ordered from, this time, last year, who must have kept my number, and are making themselves known again. I have to remind myself that there is a fine line between supporting local craftsmen and artisans, and just buying out of pity. I am reminded that there is no need to buy in bulk and hoard (though admittedly, I do have hoarding tendencies) because things spoil, and we have been ensured of a steady supply chain of goods. Another opportunity has arisen to remind ourselves that we have a choice between fear, and faith – choosing the latter, although requiring a degree of strength and resilience, is what will get us by even at the most seemingly hopeless of times.

Lastly, may we never forget to celebrate the small moments and wins, because looking back one day, we too, will realize, that they were major – some even life altering, and life changing.