Although the numbers may not be exact, they are close, nor is the last on the list an intro into heavy debate on whether it should be illegal or legal. I want you to look at those numbers one more time and truly process the gravity of the numbers.
The Covid-19 (commonly known as the Coronavirus) deaths as of today, April 6th 2020, sits at just over 70,000 worldwide. The number is only set to rise and in a month be, quite possibly, double that. In the same time, the other numbers are guaranteed to rise as well.
Without seeing the numbers in the image and truly processing the gravity of it all we as humans are more likely to go “Yup it’s a dangerous world out there and we all just need to be safe”. We take it for granted and we become accustomed to the danger much like someone living in an abusive relationship or a war zone. We all become accustomed.
Flu? Man oh man did I have it bad last year! Everyone gets it, come now.
HIV? Yes, I wear a condom or I’ll make sure he wears one too. How do you catch it again?
Malaria? Yup avoid those areas or take gross pills and not get it.
Smoking? Do people still do this?
Cancer? I’ve lost more people to it but hopefully, I won’t get it.
Alcohol? Well, I regulate but not going to stop it.
Traffic Accident? I saw someone die in the car in front of me, I was lucky to have missed it. My heart goes out to their family.
We all become accustomed so that when we hear of it, see it or experience it… it’s just the way of life.
Why do I go on about this?
Because Covid-19 has managed to do something none of the above-mentioned horrors of daily life has managed to do. It has made us appreciate life again to it’s fullest extent. And, not just one nation, but the whole world at the same time. Even World War II didn’t manage that!
We wake up to an invisible enemy that we all share regardless of race, sexuality and religion. Our lives of going to work 9-5 every day, rushing home tired, cursing not having time to do the things we really want to do, being too exhausted to read bedtime stories to our kids… is proverbially over. Over.
All the food we used to eat, throwing so much of it away, has become a precious commodity. We can now appreciate all those who can’t afford the basic food supplies, who don’t have access to what they need and those who have never had the luxuries such as a simple tub of ice-cream, hand sanitizer, soap… toilet paper.
The paranoia and fear of the violence and riots that could come should the quarantine period keep getting extended finally felt by the many and not just the nations that experience on a daily basis due to corruption, civil unrest and war.
Having family at your side and keeping a close eye on them, being able to give them a hug, eat a meal at the table with them, see the sparkle in their eye and being able to hold their hands a treasured luxury realized with heightened importance and understanding. We now appreciate just how lucky we truly are while others are alone in foreign lands without the comfort of having their loved ones close or knowing when they’ll ever see them again.
Change is traumatic but depending on your perspective it can also be so healing.
There is only so much we can control on a day, a month or a lifetime. How we handle change, the things that get thrown at us is all about perspective and is ultimately up to us.
Covid-19 has done something to all of us.
It has affected all of us, there is not one human being alive today that hasn’t felt it’s effects regardless of economic status, religion, education, race, or sexuality. But as a human race, it has also given us all a chance to make a vital decision.
Do we wallow in despair, throw out to the world that it owes you something, rage and insight distress or hate?
Do we cast blame on politicians, local leaders, our neighbours, our relatives or the random person down the street?
Do we give up hope and condemn ourselves to the overwhelming feelings of darkness and anger?
Do we use the time to grow, to come up with ideas to help fellow man, realize all the things we have been missing and start to cherish them once more, reconnect with those from past?
Do we use the time to spread hope, love, kindness, appreciation and compassion? Do we lift others up who suffer just as we are or worse?
Do we finally all, as a human race, realize just how valid and important we all are? That Ubuntu is real and valid?
I am because you are.
You, the garbage collector that still drives the streets collecting peoples garbage that could have the virus still on but do it anyway because without you the roads would be filled with trash.
You, the delivery man and woman, who risk their lives every day going into stores, picking up parcels, all of which could be infected just to deliver it to a house where someone who is trying to protect themselves can continue to do so.
You, the truck drivers, who risk their lives every day driving across state borders to make the shops and stores have what everyone desperately needs.
You, the mail lady and man, who deliver the mail that could possibly be a cheque, a note from a loved one, a card of hope but could have the virus on just so they could have that chance of getting what they need.
You, the medical staff that go into the virus’ lion’s den every single day tired beyond words, who haven’t seen your families in fear that they get infected, that risk your lives every day in order to save others.
You, the people staying in the stores, restocking and serving the brave and desperate that venture in for necessities just so that they are able to live.
You, those that look after utilities such as water, electricity and telephone lines, who continue to go into work risking your health in order to ensure that everyone has what they need to survive.
You, the farmers and factory workers, that continue to go into work to ensure that food and necessities continue to be produced even when every time you’re there you run the risk of getting infected.
You, who step up every day regardless of the danger, in order to protect, serve and help.
You the neighbour that orders a few extra groceries for the house down the road that you know is battling.
You the stranger who checks up on those you know are sick, elderly or in need.
You are important. You are appreciated.
We all have a choice
And, it’s all about perspective.
What we do every day has a chain reaction both in our personal lives and in those around us. How we act and treat others has the opportunity to lift and make a world a far better place than it was pre-Covid-19.
The choice is in your hands and it will be remembered for years to come.