First of all, give me some seconds, as I want to type in today’s date; it is impossible without looking at the bottom right corner of my computer screen. 7th February 2021. I’m sure tomorrow I’ll be doing the same thing. And the day after tomorrow, and so on. It has become a tough task to remember the date every day.
Now, I’ll make a mental list of my news. And you know what? There aren’t any. Because the days are without surprises, neither good, nor bad. Without excitement. Uneventful days.
Today my day was like all the other days; cooking, some shopping, some cleaning, and TV. And that is because every day is like the previous day. The same routine. With the same order. Almost at the same time.
The news on TV has become predictable; x deaths, x confirmed cases, x people in ICU. The coronavirus has been hitting the world hard, and nothing seems to be able to prevent it. Except for vaccination. Things will get better when we achieve herd immunity. But it will take some time. So they say.
But, I have an important announcement to make, my dearest. I will never stop smiling, no matter what. Being a fighter is what I’ve learned well in life. And what better weapon than a smile! I know, it won’t be easy. But at least I will try.
Let me give you some examples. Cooking? There’s a wide variety of foods to surprise even the fussiest eater. I use my imagination and I cook with a smile, proud of my accomplishment. Shopping? A chance, under these circumstances, to go out and have some fun. Again, with a smile. Cleaning? Home, our sweet home, should be kept clean and tidy. Why without a smile? As for TV, the news is most of the times unbearably distressing. I always sympathize with people in pain and misfortune. Being sullen won’t help them either. I will keep my chin up and smile again.
I find pleasure in doing simple things in new, imaginative ways. It gives my life meaning and makes me feel productive. But, still, something’s missing from my life. I want to find that missing piece of my life’s puzzle.
Let me check the bottom right corner of my computer first; 9th March 2021. How time flies! It seems like only yesterday we were all out of our homes, freely working, shopping, having fun.
But no no, I refuse to let such thoughts get me down, by no means. On the contrary, I try to improvise and enrich my days with reading and music. I have come to the conclusion that the upheaval we’re all experiencing has come for one particular reason; to make us better people. To give us the chance to turn inwards, to introspect and retrospect, realize our inadequacies and faults and make efforts to ameliorate them.
Speaking for myself, I now have the time to do things that were a luxury before; relax at home, enjoy a good movie, read a good book, or listen to music. Within the walls of my apartment I live thousands of lives, visit thousands of places, meet thousands of people. And, indeed, my confidence has been boosted; I feel rejuvenated, reborn. Within the walls of my apartment I have risen from my ashes, like a phoenix. And I think to myself “No, I don’t want it to end”.
I feel like Icarus. I’ve just constructed my wings and I’m ready to fly. Maybe not too close to the sun and not too close to the sea, but definitely somewhere in the middle. I’m open to new experiences, willing to let the masters of art guide me to the light.
I know we aren’t all in the same boat. I know there are people who experience illness, loss and death. My soul bleeds at the thought of them. And I can’t help but fear I may be the next. But I refuse to let fear consume me. I will carry on for them and for myself. Till the end, whatever that is.
I still always check the bottom right corner of my computer for the date; it has almost become a habit for me, since I still can’t make it on my own. 20th May 2021.
Things are looking up, my dearest. Specialists say the end of the pandemic isn’t far away. The return to normalcy is near. But I’m afraid this “normalcy” wont’ be the same as before. I feel there will always be suspicion and doubt as regards the return of the virus, or the appearance of a new one.
As for me, I have learned to lead a completely different life. I feel I lived in the shallows before, now I’m in the deep. I have read literature, poetry, and a little philosophy. My new friends – the authors and heroes of the books - have helped me and taught me to judge, to critique, and to question, maybe on a small scale, but I don’t – and won’t - lose heart. I was blind, and now I see. I see the meaning of the world, the stars, the sun and the moon. The meaning of life and death. The difference between wisdom and ignorance. Ignorance may be bliss, but knowledge is power.
Please don’t misunderstand me, my dearest. I haven’t become snobbish or arrogant, not in the slightest. But allow me to feel a little proud of myself and of my achievement, of my ability to see the light. I need this pride to carry on through the obstacles and disappointments of life. All people need something to fall back on when the going gets tough.
Today, I also have some bad news, my dearest. Yesterday I felt great tiredness, and I started to cough. I also had fever. Worried by the symptoms, I went to the hospital for a rapid test and was found positive. I may have to be hospitalized and… who knows what will come next. I’m not afraid, not in the least. Because I have no remorse, nor regrets.
Therefore, it may take some time until I write again. You know I will miss you terribly. Together, we’ve been through thick and thin. And I’m grateful for all the days we’ve spent together. I’m sure the best is yet to come.