There is no consensus yet as to whether the novel coronavirus was sent by God to awaken us or not, the reality is that the whole world is now wide awake. Uganda, just like many other countries, has been under lockdown. However, with every closed door comes an open window and the window in this case is in form of the lessons learnt. We have been forced to do things in ways we hitherto thought were impossible. We have learnt life lessons that will make life more meaningful after this pandemic. Lessons learnt include;
Social Distancing: Many of us have been in each other’s faces, not giving our friends, relatives and neighbors any time or space to breathe. Of particular mention are gossipers who have habitually been hopping from one house to another spreading rumors and destroying relationships. This lockdown has given many people an opportunity to realize that we can live without rumors. The second category is that of people who find pleasure in always visiting where they are not wanted. With the knowledge that every person is a potential carrier of the COVID-19 virus has come the responsibility to stay away from people. Social distancing has given us an opportunity to concentrate on our own lives.
Covering the mouth while sneezing: In order to combat the spread of COVID-19, one of the W.H.O guidelines is that we need to cover our mouths and noses while we cough or sneeze, or do it in our elbows. Hopefully, this will make us develop the discipline of carrying handkerchiefs every time, not just when we have a cold.
Staying at home and spending time with our families.
As bars and restaurants are now closed, this could be time to spend more time at home, it is an opportunity to reduce alcohol consumption or quit drinking completely and embrace healthier feeding habits. This is also a good opportunity for family members to bond and some actual parenting.
Check on your loved ones: If there is anything that scares people, it is the idea of facing death. That’s what COVID-19 has done to most people. We are suspicious of everyone. And consequently, we worry for our loved ones. Many of us have called loved ones to check on them or they have done the same in the last few weeks.
Watch news and follow world events: Life doesn’t always revolve around sports. If there is anything that has brought families together during this time, it is media. The hunger for news has been unmatched in the recent times. For a moment, ignorance stopped being bliss because everyone needed to know where the danger is, to what extent they are at risk of contracting COVID-19 and the response government is putting in place.
Learn somthing new: Educate yourself about things you don’t know. Most people I interacted with during the lockdown said they had an abundance of time. Most had no idea what do with all the time. But others, including myself took it as an opportunity to learn something new. Personally, I learnt about computer coding, digital marketing.
Hygiene, especially washing hands at all times will not kill you, but it will kill germs and bacteria. This was the tip of the iceberg during lock down. While at it, let’s also sanitize our brains from bad thoughts and plans, from jealousy and affinity to sin, from hatred and corruption, among others.
This pandemic is still sending shockwaves in all aspects of our lives. The world is hurting. But, we should have faith and hope that we will get out of this. We are #AloneTogether.
Whereas it is easy to focus on the doom and gloom of this global crisis, we should pick a few positives. Let’s learn more, do more. But above all, don’t forget to #StaySafe.redistribute wealth in our uncontrolled economy. The only realistic solution in the circumstances would be to set a price cap for all commodity prices, or at least the essential ones.
By Rugaya M. Julius Caesar
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