The Lockdown

Getting back from the hospital seemed like a long drive. The thoughts of how worse could the situation have got and the subtle feeling of getting past my episode clouded my head. When I reached the driveway, my cats were anxiously waiting for me. I greeted the puff balls with hugs and finally felt like everything was normal, so to say.

I ordered some groceries online for delivery. My uncle left me with dinner. I tried cleaning up the house but was constantly falling short of breaths. By the time I finished I was tired relentless. I came back to my room and laid over for a while.

The past few weeks, life had not been particular kind to me. Amongst all the chaos, being at home was the best feeling I had in so many days. The thing about adversity is that it teaches you how to appreciate the small moments, otherwise easily ignored.

I called in at work and asked them to give me another week off so that I could recover from pneumonia. Everyone back in India was happy to hear that I was recovering. The coming few days, dealing with pneumonia was tricky, as I'd say. It took a lot out of me to even do normal chores. Everything I tried to do left me breathless.

While I was dealing with my personal despair, the rest of the world was dealing with coronavirus. Australia was a bit lucky as it took a while for the virus to enter the country. We had only a few cases here but as it was all over media and there were so many cases and deaths all around the world, people switched on their panic mode and started panic buying.

I still remember when after 3 weeks, I stepped into the grocery store wearing a mask. All I could see was empty shelves. People had bought every single piece of tissue and wipe and sanitizer and hand soap they could put their hands on. Even groceries like pasta and flour along with other basic necessities were out of stock. I felt so bad for the elderly who was already scared of the virus and they couldn't find the basics as well.

In a matter of weeks, the whole country went into a lockdown. Only essential businesses were open and only essential travel was allowed. Well being a type 1 diabetic puts me in the high-risk category but because I am an immigrant and do not have a permanent residency yet, I could not expect any help from the government, despite me diligently paying my taxes each year.

I had to put my life at risk to go back to work and dealing with all of my own health issues as well. Petrol stations were categorised as emergency services and were still open and I went back to work while I was still recovering from my infection.

In those 3 months of lockdown, I saw how less these materialistic things mean and how much people and relationships matter. We all can die tomorrow of a diseases no one even knows of and all we can take away with us is the memories and love and all we leave behind is the memories and the love.

This feeling grounded me more and I got a sense of spreading more happiness around me. My parents were very worried about me still going to work and being in contact with strangers but I guess we all are superheroes in our own sense and try to do our bit for ourselves and for others and I think the whole world learnt a lesson and reflected from this pandemic. We now understand the value of small things we ignore.

A word of kindness, support and family.