As COVID-19 sweeps away from country to country and governments start imposing lockdown measures, we realize how much things have changed. It seems like an eternity ago that we were making plans for the weekends with our friends and family – now, we can only see them via video call.
When the lockdown came
As the new virus started to spread in China, some of the neighboring South-East Asian countries such as Taiwan and South Korea took the threat seriously. Now all three countries are reporting fewer and fewer daily cases (a couple of dozens per day) while the rest of the world ignored the calls for safety.
The virus quickly spread to the United States and France but no immediate measures were taken. Only later were flights to and from Wuhan banned but by then, the virus was infiltrated in Europe. Iran soon announced thousands of cases, followed by Italy. But borders still remained open and not enough people arriving were tested or put in quarantine.
Now almost all of Europe is under lockdown. So are the countries in Africa and South America. The United States is still struggling to enforce a nationwide lockdown. With weeks of lockdown behind us and other weeks coming up we are preparing for what life in the cities during a crisis is really like.
Cities under pandemic
Just a couple of months ago living in the big city meant you just couldn’t use your Hook 4x from Lowrance as often as you’d like as there wasn’t any good enough fishing lake around you. But it also meant you had art galleries, clubs and pubs open so you could get out of the house and spend time with your friends.
At the very least, you could have gone for a walk in the park and it was still a nice change from your daily commute to and from work. Now those memories already seem like they are from another lifetime. Unlike people living in rural areas who have a garden to relax in, living in the city means we can only go to the balcony to feel like we’re outside.
Sure, you can go out for some shopping nearby or for a doctor’s appointment, but you know it’s risky to stay outside for much longer and even if you dare to waste time there’s probably some police, somewhere, just waiting to tell you to go inside. People with depression and anxiety may feel even worse during such times. But can we change this around?
What can we learn from this?
Many people have problems being on their own. Even if we are under lockdown with our families, we quickly got to feeling like we have no privacy and all the things that we didn’t like about them are now even more obvious. Reports of domestic violence across pandemic-hit cities are also rising, not just the cases of coronavirus infections.
That’s because we haven’t made our house a real home and we haven’t worked on that ancient saying of self-love. We used to simply fill time with some distractions but not really follow a real purpose. We didn’t have hobbies, just spare time. Now we are facing the consequences of not planning our life as we knew we should have.
We are learning that in order to live with others we have to let go of some of our fixations just like they need to work on their flaws. We need real hobbies that give us a purpose even in our darkest hours. We need to learn how to be self-sufficient. All these weeks will make us change our behavior like never before.
What we’ll do after the pandemic is over is the real question – will we continue on this path of self-love we’ve just recently discovered? Or go back in a second to our old ways? Only time will tell.