Tag Archives: realization

Quarantine and Think

When it comes on to the future there is always a high level of uncertainty. Despite this known phenomenon, we are still grappling with this pandemic and its effects on our lives. We are wrapped in a never ending cycle of disbelief and are very much puzzled by the current disruption we are encountering.

For the first time in my life I have witnessed worldwide disruption.

I will definitely be able to tell my children and my grandchildren that I was a part of this horrific historical event. And the sad truth is, a part of me feels elated to be living in a time that will definitely be written down in our history books.

I cannot quite imagine what life was like in the Great Depression of the 1930s or even during World War I. However, I am sure that those era are very much similar to the havoc COVID-19 has been reigning down on us.

It is the first time in a long while that students are pulled from schools, almost every business is closed and those who always whine about having to turn up to work on a daily basis, have no choice but to stay at home- unless of course they are essential workers.

One of the most prevalent topic that has been parading through this whole quarantine life is money. Most people are taking the time to start a new business, are being encouraged to ensure that they have residual income or are thinking of how they can make better financial decisions once this ‘new normal’ has passed.

All of this is completely understandable. However, with so much time to just sit at home and think, I have thought of so much more than financial stability.

Please do not get me wrong.

I do understand that money is just as essential as our basic needs- food, shelter and clothes. There is no doubt that the amount of money you have determines the lifestyle that you live.

The reality is everyone needs money.

I, however, cannot stop thinking of how COVID-19 has reinforced a factual ideology. The ideology of how unpredictable life is. Everytime I think of what we are experiencing, the only thing I can say is ‘this is so crazy.’

Although I should not be reacting like that, since I already know that tomorrow is not guaranteed and noone knows what the future holds.

During this time, I, like many of you, have thought of money, how it is needed and how saving for a rainy day is not just a saying but a philosophy that we need to live by.

However, I just happen to be indifferent towards the overzealous attitude most people tend to have about money.

The truth is there is so much more to life than what’s in our bank accounts. And if for some reason you are in disagreement, just check how often celebrities, socialites and affluent people have committed suicide.

So let us get back to the things I have been thinking about during quarantine.

Some important things (not money) that I have thought about and would like to share with you are:

– if this disease should be the end of humanity, it would not have mattered if we are rich or poor,

– we should not confine ourselves to unhappy situations,

– our happiness and peace of mind are essential,

– learn to be kind to everyone,

– learn to love, share and encourage good,

– we should take pride in both our health and mental well-being,

– be accepting of others even if they do not share our beliefs, values and faith,

– appreciate our freedom and make good use of it,

– seize the moment, and last but not least;

– do what we desire as you only live once (Y.O.L.O).

Every Parent

There are many things that shape us into the person we are today. The family, however, is the first and most important source of socialization that imparts knowledge, beliefs and values.

The title alludes to one element of our family. An element that is subjective and critical in determining how we turn out to be.

So what does the title mean?

  • Every parent, biological, legal guardians or adoptive, treats their child in the way that they think is best for their well-being.
  • Every parent imparts ways, knowledge, beliefs and values that may flourish or ruin their children.

My mother was the first from whom I learned the things that I liked, hated, dreaded, wanted to emulate and was against. She was the first tangible source of all the things that I want to be and did not want to be.

Her flaws were parallel by her compassion, unmatched sacrifice and commitment. She did her best with what she learned from her parents, the life she had before me, when I was born and the challenges that she faced raising me.

Twenty-eight years later, I look back on my life and I am puzzled with what ifs. I judge her shortcomings and I wonder if things would have been different. If I would have been different. If her efforts could have been more and if they were, if they would have yielded better results.

My intention is not to talk only about mothers or about my mother. My desire is to talk about parents in general. However, in my case a mother is all I had and as such I have to speak of my parenting experience through her.

In 2015, I sat in a classroom in Garden City, NY reading Philip Larkin’s poem “This Be the Verse.” If this poem has never crossed your path, you should probably google it. It best summarizes the subjectiveness of parenting. It speaks of all the unintentional good and bad of the actions of our parents. Larkin tells us how our parents best intentions of raising us may only have turned out into “the[m] fucking [us] up.”

At a tender age we may not understand. More importantly, we will not be able to notice all the psychological ways in which our parents’ actions have affected us. Some of us may have identified the negative consequences of our parents’ attempt to raise us only when we have become adults. On the other hand, some of us may never live to know that the way we are today is as a result of how we were raised and what we were exposed to.

Nevertheless, we all should be grateful for the life we have now. We should try to fix whatever that was ruined within us on our own. We have to move on from the past by acknowledging and making peace with the fact that our parents were raising us in the best way they knew how to. Blame not our parents. Remember that whatever they did or did not do, “they may not [have] mean[t] to.”

Chanshie B