Lifestyle Blog from the Philippines

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Pandemic Diaries: Frustrations

The COVID 19 pandemic has taken practically half of the year away from us and the end is not yet in sight. These challenging times have brought out the best in some, the worst in others. It has elicited a lot of fear, anxiety, and frustration in many. There are so many unknown factors when it comes to this virus, so it is hard for many to process their feelings because of how uncertain everything is until a vaccine is produced and distributed.

Image by cromaconceptovisual from Pixabay

From what I have seen from people around me, some have dealt with the frustration and the uncertainty of the situation by blocking it out. Some have even opted to stop getting updates on the virus. They have stopped watching the news and skip past any online updates they get on social media. While I respect that they are doing what they can to cope, I am also worried that this affects the way they behave during the pandemic. That maybe blocking it out and trying to live their lives as “normally” as possible but I worry that it causes them to be complacent about the precautions that need to be taken to ensure that they do not get infected or, if they are possibly asymptomatic, to prevent others from being infected.

It is alarming that despite repeated reminders for people to stay safe and take the necessary precautions, many are not taking it seriously. Watching the news and seeing how many people do not wear masks and are gathering in large groups in many parts of the world is enough to make me scared. Even with news that hospitals are finding it difficult to manage the volume of patients that need to be treated and how painful it is to suffer from COVID 19, many people are not doing what they can to stay safe. Sure, they do not feel anything, and they are not getting sick. But for some, it will only be a matter of time. For others, they can be asymptomatic and spreading the disease to others. I do not understand why these people do not seem to care. Do they not understand the gravity of the situation?

I have heard some people say that the lockdowns were so long, and they missed going out and seeing family and friends, that’s why when restrictions were eased, they decided to go out. But, as another person told me, it would be a waste of her time on lockdown if she stopped taking precautions now just because of lighter restrictions. If the months she spent not leaving the house staying safe are wasted by getting infected after only a couple of hours out to see friends, that for her would be unacceptable. While allowed to go out, she opts to stay at home as much as possible. She limits her trips to essential travel for food and other essentials, making sure to wear a mask when she does. 

I think we all need to have that kind of mindset. The virus is still around. Restrictions may have eased, but it does not mean everything is back to normal and that we are all safe. We are far from it. We cannot put it all on the government and those in the health care industry to keep us safe. We all need to do our part too. This is something that everyone has to work on.

Recently, I overheard two people talking about how one of them does not follow the required distancing on public transportation, specifically riding a tricycle with more than one passenger. One asked the other why she is doing that when it is not allowed. She reasoned that it's fine, she just gets off before the checkpoints so that they don't get caught. I know some people think that the government is being unreasonable with its restrictions, but social distancing is something that is being asked of us for our own good. So that we do not get infected. So that we do not infect others. 

It is, admittedly, harder now for all of us because restrictions make public transportation a challenge, but we also have to understand why those restrictions are in place. We can't be stubborn about things like that when our lives and the lives of people we love are at stake. I know that not all of us are privileged enough to not take public transportation and many have no choice but to take the risk, but for those of us with options like the person I overheard, I think that blatantly disregarding the rules is very selfish during this pandemic. As the saying goes, for those of us to whom much is given, much is required/expected.

The frustrations that many people feel during this time are understandable. There is the frustration that there is no cure specifically for the virus, just methods of treatment that can help those suffering from it to recover. With a vaccine still a long way away, infected individuals who are not asymptomatic have to deal with months of hospitalization that takes a toll on their bodies (and their finances, to be honest). As upset as we are that there are not enough hospitals, a need for improved testing and tracing and that there is no cure or vaccine, there is nothing we can do about it. This is a situation that is being experienced all over the world and this is the first time in a long time that something like this has happened. The whole world was not prepared for this. We can only hope that a solution can be found soon. In the meantime, we all need to do our part to stay safe and not spread the virus further than it already has.

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

We all need to remember that what we need to do is the bare minimum to help ease the burden of hospitals and to ensure that the people around us and the people we love are safe. As I mentioned earlier, we can complain all we want that not enough is being done to prevent the spread of the virus, but it goes both ways. We need to do our part too. It is not that hard.

  • Stay home. Only travel for the essentials or for work. Avoid social gatherings/large groups in the meantime. If we all do that, we can prevent the spread of the virus and have a lifetime more gatherings together in the future.
  • Remember to wash your hands. If you cannot wash them right away, disinfect with alcohol.  
  • Wear a mask. Avoid touching your face.
  • Socially distance from other people. Keep away from large crowds. 
  • Take a shower/disinfect once you get home from being out. Disinfect items you receive from outside before using or storing them.
  • Take your vitamins. Get some exercise. Eat right. 

We still have a long road of this pandemic ahead. It would help if we were all alive to do so. Please stay safe and take care of yourselves and your loved ones. Let us all do what we can and hope (and pray) for the best.


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