A Contemporary Dilemma
It was the middle of the night. William looked at his teddy bear and sighted. Then, he got out of bed and ran to the living room. He found his grandma near the chimney and asked for his favourite story. Again? Again.
She looked at the window and while noticing her reflection, she immediately recognized the familiar sense of estrangement and how the world had started to change its shape. The park that was once full of energy and laughter from the children that used to play there is now surrounded by silence. The smell of fresh coffee that would call you inside the coffee shop located on the corner is now replaced by a locked door and a sign mentioning restrictions. Even the black cat that used to patrol the neighbourhood daily has been out of duty for more than a week. But what happened to the people the boy constantly asked. She smiled at his curiosity. The people? They were either self-isolating inside their homes and complying with the rules, or became rebels and exposed themselves to catching the virus. But what did you choose to do? Were you a fighter or a follower? She begun to laugh now. Me? I think you can say that I could be identified as both. It was during the spring break of my first year at university. Most of my schedule was assigned to research for the exams and assessments that were due after the holiday. I was planning to visit my home town, thus I wanted to do as much preparation in advance as possible. But after that… what? What happened? After that everything was different. The level of moral panic was persistently increasing. Regulation was being implemented for when to leave your house, where to go out and with whom. Businesses were temporarily out of order, borders were closing and flights were being cancelled. At first, I was doubtful, but as my journey was disrupted four times in a row, I started to wonder if that is going to be the reality that I will live in. William seemed to be lost in thoughts, but he nodded and the story went on. I was captive in an endless storm of questions that could not be answered. It felt so wrong to go out, but so strange to stay indoors. However, I could not stay still. I needed to engage, to explore, to feel normal again. So, I decided to challenge myself every day: finish that book that you have started two months ago, cook that recipe that you were always curious how it tastes, do that yoga and meditation course that you never give it a chance to. Just little reminders which made me aware that even if there was no proper solution to be found, I was being lucky enough to survive.
‘So… in all the madness, there was still hope?’ William asked.
‘Hope, my dear, was all we had have got.’
Hope. One word. Four letters. Yet, it is a fundamental tool for a balanced state of mind. It is what encourages people to go forward, to believe in themselves, and to see light where is only darkness. Thus, the aim of the collage that I have created is to show that even in a difficult situation as the lock-down, there could still be some positivity found. Although it has brought a wave of uncertainty about when I will be able to see my loved ones or when it will be safe to go out without a mask, it has also benefited me in finding new passions, exploring breath-taking landscapes and most importantly, it has taught me to take each day as it is and just try to make the most out of it.