Dear diary! I have never faced such a situation like the Coronavirus Lockdown before. I am sure no one else has experienced it either. It makes me feel strange and panicked at times. I cannot put my emotions into words properly. I feel out of place like I do not have anywhere to go. It makes me feel trapped, disproportionate, agitated, misplaced, and a suffocated prisoner. These days, I am chaotic, clumsy, lunatic, and crazy too. However, I believe that my melancholic quarantine days are a blessing in disguise.
I was on a trip to Lahore with my family when out of the blue the government announced this lockdown. So, we had to leave towards Rawalpindi immediately. Otherwise, we would have been stuck there for a month if we did not leave. It was an emergency. We had to leave in the middle of the night at 2 p.m. That is how crazy and edgy this chaos makes people feel. The coronavirus is no one’s fault. However, when I came back, I was gloomy, melancholic, trapped, worried, and a caged individual.
Fortunately, we did not come to know of a single person who had fallen prey to Corona in Rawalpindi. In Islamabad, this virus has affected many people, though. The good thing is that my family has been living in a safer zone until now. The Almighty has been generous. I pray that HE continues to shower his blessings on my clan and the rest of humanity. And I hope that things would get better now. The worst is over.
However, one keeps hearing about the number of people who lost their lives because of this epidemic. It is a state of fear and helplessness. I do not watch television these days. Everyone should unsubscribe the video channels on YouTube that promote such content that might make them anxious. They should avoid the daily depressing social media updates on this ailment. At least, that is what I have done. Mental peace is extremely important after all.
So, I keep myself busy and try to find positivity in other things in life. My words are a huge source of catharsis these days. My articles, stories, and poems make me feel lighter. They give me an unforgettable sense of achievement. I feel like a champion or a victorious warrior clad in shining armor because of the things I write.
I am associated with a couple of online websites. So, it does not bother me if I cannot go out of my house for some days. I am used to staying at home, so my routine did not change. It is almost the same. However, the tragic situation of the world and Pakistan deeply saddens my heart.
Being an introvert, I always enjoy alone or me-time the most. People would see me either writing on a new topic or watching the drama serials that I missed out, because of my busy schedule. For example, Alif on Geo television network. Listening to music, watching a movie, and reading a good romance novel are some of my favorite hobbies these days. I have reached the last chapters of Nicholas Sparks’ Every Breath because I had ample time to pursue my hobbies. It has been an enjoyable read so far. I plan to write a review on it for my blog or an online website as soon as I finish reading it.
I believe in taking care of my health, staying home, and wearing masks. I believe in washing hands, staying positive, and spreading it too. People should sun-bathe, exercise, sleep enough, and take vitamin supplements. In quarantine, I gorge on oranges, spinach, broccoli, lemon, fish, eggs, and cheese. They keep me healthy and fight the virus for me.
My phone broke down 1 day. However, I cannot go out, so someone can repair it. I cannot visit my dentist. And I would be out of pens soon. Even in today’s era of technology, a pen and a rough register are a must for me to write. Probably, I belong to the stone-age but I like to reread. So, I can make sure of the quality of my articles before I type them out on the M.S. word document.
However, my optimistic side tells me nowadays that I ought to adjust to this crazy chaotic time. Moreover, it says that there are people who face bigger issues. Therefore, I believe that my melancholic quarantine days are a blessing in disguise.
If I had a 9-5 job, then I would have had a difficult time coping. There would have been trouble in my paradise then. However, it is not the case at the moment. Coronavirus does not allow students to go to school. So, mothers have to teach them at home.
My sister submits her university assignments online. So, this odd disease is affecting everyone’s study routine. My brother does his office-work from home. Businesses and sales are running at a slower pace. Nothing is the same as before.
There are 2 sides to every coin, though. Quarantine has brought families closer. Individuals were too busy to meet anyone before when they were not staying home. However, now, they chat with their relatives on video calls every other day. Children do not have to go to school. They play games like ludo, cricket, or tennis. Kids spend time with parents and learn from them. Elders can go for walks in the evenings with the love of their lives.
The number of people who loved to dine out has reduced considerably. So, health improves when fewer individuals eat junk foods. Traffic on the roads is lesser because no one drives cars. Hence, air pollution has reduced a lot. Everyone can breathe in cleaner air. The ozone layer is in better shape too. I feel as if I am living in those simpler days again. These are similar to those times about which my grandmother used to tell me.
Everyone is getting closer to nature. A few days ago, we celebrated my brother’s birthday at home during the quarantine. The cake and other dishes were delicious. Everyone had a memorable and awesome family time. Ramadan is beginning soon. People will pray, and ask for forgiveness in the month of the Almighty’s blessings. He will end this utter chaos, and misery that individuals call Corona. I believe that my melancholic quarantine days are a blessing in disguise.
By Sumaiyah Ali (Rawalpindi)