It’s somewhat dangerous in a way to write about something that is still going on. Facts and figures change constantly. However, this is what I’m about to do. I want to point the importance of what we should learn from all of this. Yes, this does regard the corona crisis.
Daily, we can read about the coronavirus. There is one advantage. I don’t have to write about what the coronavirus is. Everyone knows about this virus. Using the word advantage feels a little strange though. It’s a dangerous virus, that holds us all in a lock. The uncertainty is one important factor.
The virus. As if there is only one virus in this world. As if there aren’t other diseases that are more dangerous or deadly. Cancer, Ebola, HIV or whatever the name is. They seem to get less attention at this moment. It’s not that these diseases don’t need to get the attention they need. It’s not that they’re gone. These too are diseases that have a great impact on our lives.
When I put everything aside, I see a medical emergency. This has an impact on our daily life. You work from home. If you’re a parent, you teach your children (when the schools are closed). Doing your groceries is somewhat of an adventure. You can’t go out if you want to. Well, not in the way you normally do. You are restricted in every part of your daily life or routine. It’s hard for some to accept this.
In my own country, we went into a lockdown light or an intelligent lockdown. Not everything is closed (down). Schools are closed. You can’t go to cafes or bars. It’s a situation where you’re limited. This causes a lot of pain for those who own a business. I am a self-employed photographer, writer and more. I can’t do what I normally do. Except for learning from all of this.
For many of us, working from home was never an option. For some professions, it still isn’t. There are, however, many professions that could be done from home. If you are one of those people who can work from home, you should ask yourself the question: after this is over, why can’t I work from home more often?
On social media, I see a lot of photos of families who are working together. Together. That is an important word. Together is possible. Something we might not have even considered. Because it was impossible. Or because your employer didn’t find it a good idea. But there is something else that’s important. Doing things together after this is over, demands something from us. It’s stepping away from the old fashioned patterns. Mostly the one where the husband goes to work in the morning and the woman stays at home. I’ve written many articles about all of this and I’m certain I will write about this topic in the future.
Why is this important?
As said, I wrote about equal opportunities on more than one occasion. Equal opportunities when it comes to labour. So much has to change there. One of the arguments people use when they say this should be changed isn’t valid anymore. That is the argument that it’s always been this way. This crisis proves that it’s necessary to let go of this idea. It’s possible. More than one family showed this. The beauty of this: it’s not limited to just one country.
The conditions as we speak are less than perfect. As parents, you might feel forced into something you aren’t. This causes friction because you want to do it right. Unless you’re working in the education sector, you aren’t doing things right all the time. Even if you are, there are good days and there are bad days. You must realize that you’re not a teacher. You’re a parent. All you can do is your best. That’s what counts.
When this crisis is history, don’t forget what you’ve done. You should also not forget what changes were made. There’s always the possibility to step away from the old fashioned role patterns. Just remember what you did then (now).
One other important lesson we should learn from this has to do with distance. We’re all encouraged to take the social distance. Can you even imagine how wonderful it will be to see your family and friends again? Without the 1.5 or 2.0 meters distance? It’s something to cherish. Something you would probably have never done before.
There’s always the option to go back to the idea that you need to put yourself first. To make sure that you get what you want and not think about others. Do we want to go back to the “though luck principle?” Do we? Do we want to go back to a society where some are just unlucky?
Support is important. It’s important during this crisis and it should be more important after this crisis is over. I hope that this is the start of something new. Something beautiful. Most importantly, I hope that this is the beginning of something we would consider to be normal. A standard if you like. Without using a price tag or a label. Something that started when COVID-19 got hold of the world.
This is my wish. Lessons need to be learned from all of this and why not start with these lessons while the crisis is not yet history? Consider it as a mirror. You can check if there’s something wrong with your face. Is nothing wrong, fine! If there is something wrong, take action (if possible). Seek help. The assurance that you will be taken care of should comfort you. It should turn into a scavenger hunt.
The initiatives arising from this crisis are heartwarming. There are just too many to list in this article. All driven by charity. What doesn’t belong in this world is intolerance, hate and impatience. These are things that we have to change after all this. Somewhere far away from here.