What we can be grateful for in the age of coronavirus

Despite the extremely difficult circumstances we find ourselves in, there may be some silver linings we can hold onto.

This is definitely not the ideal way to kick off a new decade. With the current crisis that we are in, lockdown might seem pretty dull and frustrating – not being able to see your friends, go to school or even just go to the park casually without being conscious of social distancing. You must all miss those normal day-to-day activities. However, now is an excellent opportunity to slow down and take a moment to be grateful for what we have.

You might be asking, thankful for what? Well, we should be grateful for the keyworkers who are risking their own lives to protect us. We can be grateful for having food and clean water to consume and a roof upon our heads; these enable us to stay safely at home and protect our bodies and our family members as best as possible. I am grateful to technology, for helping me stay engaged with my studies, play games and keep in contact with external family and friends. The school staff are taking every opportunity to try and make sure that the remote-learning environment is as similar to if we were in school. Our friends are still chatting – setting up video calls, catching up and having fun while doing it. Now we can take the chance to make proper use of social media when we are further away from each other for an extended period. It is much more useful than when we see each other every day within 24 hours during the school term. Moreover, many of us will be grateful to our parents, who are there to support us if we ever start to feel down or even just for companionship etc. Now, we can have the quality family time that we have always longed to have by playing board games and doing trivia.

In addition to this, our Earth is our home and because of the imposed lockdown, climate change seems to be slowing down. Compare, for example, Venice Canals from before and now; these strict lockdowns have made various significant impacts. Less vehicles in use is leading to less pollution. This is an important example of the power of human behaviour to create change in the environment around us.

Without doubt, this is a very difficult time for many, from those who are struggling with anxiety and depression to those who may lose loved ones. For many of us though, it may be helpful to take a minute to appreciate these silver linings and remember that the support of a whole community is still around us until we are eventually physically reunited again.

Raniya, MIV