Why do shitstorms teach us the most valuable lessons? Why do our worst heartbreaks, failures, and tragedies bear life-changing epiphanies? The answer to that question lies in a cliche quote I grabbed from the gutters of 'Instagram.'
"Rock bottoms teach you lessons that mountain tops never would."
Indeed! The view from rock bottoms is different from the view from mountain tops. Hence, rock bottoms teach you different lessons. These rock bottoms (or shitstorms) turn our lives upside down and force us to learn new things by changing our perspectives.
It's safe to say that this pandemic is a "Worldwide Shitstorm." Naturally, a shitstorm this big brings us equally big lessons. Here is what I learned.
1) Our most ordinary activities are our greatest treasures
A simple walk around the block (without a mask on), dining in a horrid eatery, a hang out with friends where we talk nonsense are our life's greatest treasures. We don't need a piña colada in the Bahamas while we skydive out of a jet to be happy. The simple things we do are our meat and potatoes of life, not the fancy vacations we fantasize about. We took those things for granted, which leads me to my next point.
2) Never take the simple things in life for granted
Thanks to this pandemic, I will never take freely breathing outside for granted again. Who would have thought? That one day, we would be forced to wear masks outdoor and look like extras from "The Phantom of the Opera."
It also makes me wonder what I am taking for granted right now. Cerb Payments? Uber eats? My dysfunctional family? These seemingly simple things need more of our gratitude. Because we might lose them one day too.
3) You can get used to anything
Remember when Trump got elected, and we thought we would never get used to his shenanigans? What happened later? Did we lose our minds and explode? No, we just got used to it. Just like we got used to this pandemic. I saw my 6-year-old cousin put on a mask before going out as if he been doing that since birth. He didn't moan or groan either; the same can't be said for me. So it doesn't matter how bad a situation is, you will get used to it.
4) It reminds me of our resilience
This pandemic has killed more than 800 thousand people already. It's forcing us to make tough decisions every day. "Do I go to work and risk the death of my grandma? Or do I rely on the government to feed my family?" Tragically, this is one of the "good" scenarios because the person still has a job in this scenario. Unfortunately, a lot of people don't since the pandemic took a dump on the economy. The screwed up economy and the tragic death toll aside, its also causing havoc on our psyches. Mental health problems are on a historical rise. So is domestic and sexual abuse.
The world's basically up in flames, but we have still managed to laugh, live and make banana bread for whatever reason. Not really surprising cause we have been surviving one catastrophe after another since the beginning of time.
Our ancestors survived ice ages, wars, genocides, plagues, nuclear annihilation anxiety, and god knows what else. Now is the time we show OUR resilience. So people in the future can look back and say, 'Those guys were so badass they survived that pandemic while baking banana bread!'
So, don't fret. The world's not going to end. We will be fine, we always have been.
And when life throws you another hurdle. Remind yourself. "I survived Covid-19, I will survive this too."
- Post by Aleef Khan, SExT Cast Member and Resident Blog Contributor
What is your Quarantine Dream? ☁️🦄
How do you envision our world post-pandemic? We asked our cast to share their Quarantine Dreams…and obviously, we had to sing 🎤 about it. SExT encourages YOU to reflect on YOUR pandemic experiences and share your ideas for a better future on social media using #QuarantineDream.
This pandemic has been rough on more than our physical health. It has affected our mental health and relationships. It has exposed systemic inequalities. It also woke us up and gave us a rare chance to pump the breaks and consider the future we want to CREATE for ourselves and our communities.
The #QuarantineDream music video and social media campaign is funded by the ‘U of T COVID-19 Student Engagement Award’ through the generosity of the Office of the Vice-President, international and University Toronto Scarborough. Thank you to TakingITGlobal, the Government of Canada, and Canada Service Corps for generously supporting this project!
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