It is an understatement to say that the COVID-19 pandemic caused a global setback. There have been delays as regards essential matters including peace talks and climate change conventions. In micro situations, especially in the Philippines, people have been affected by the crisis. The two-year intermittent lockdowns and community quarantines resulted in a higher unemployment rate, price hike, and increased school dropouts to name a few.
We lost a lot
To answer the question, “Did we miss out on things due to the pandemic?” Yes, we did. Big time. It just depends on how lucky and how privileged a person is that defines how bad the pandemic affected him. In the education sector, the number of dropouts multiplied. This is because of financial incapacity to support education.
Some were forced to work to provide for their families’ basic needs.
Moreover, since production halted, SMEs were forced to make some changes. Several had shut down their businesses. While those fortunate enough had to choose between cutting back on wages or manpower. Due to hiccups in production and transportation of goods, prices of products in the market doubled.
Aside from not seeing our friends and families for a time, ruining our mental health due to social deprivation, or not being able to travel, these are the things that we really lost. The chance to achieve our dreams sooner, the chance to start our own businesses, and the chance to spend another day with our lost loved ones. These are what we lost. We did not just take a step back, we had to leap downward away from our goals.
Where do we go from here?
After two years of struggling, things are gradually getting back to normal. Establishments and transportations are operating at full capacity, schools are opening, and people can go outside their houses freely. Yet, there are still marks of the pandemic. Face masks are normalized, temperature checking is a must at every entrance, and sanitizers suddenly became a need for everyone.
I do not have the exact answer to the question “where do we go from here?”, all I know is that we have to move forward. We should try our best to move on carrying our lessons from what happened. After all, we do not really have a choice. Whether we want to pause or not, it’s not in our hands to decide. We have to collect ourselves and continue from where we are right now. Step by step, one thing at a time.
We lost a great deal of things due to the pandemic. However, it is up to us if we want to lose more.
Angelo has always been interested in photography and writing. He has been participating in various photography-related events since high school. Street photography is his most favorite type as he believes that this is where life is the most candid - where inequality, denigration, love, and hope coexist everyday. One day, he aspires to be an environmental photojournalist that does his part for a better world.