Coping With Covid
Imagine yourself as a bird soaring through the sky after leaving the confines of an institution such as a University. You are up in the air gliding with excitement because of all the opportunities that are out there for you. A young, confident and eager individual with a brilliant mind ready to take on the world- when all of a sudden you get shot down and struck by a big bulldozing Boeing, also known as COVID-19.
That was March 2020 for me. I had just completed a few fantastic interviews and I was ready to conquer the world, but it was almost as though the world had said no, not yet. It was a very low period for me, one where I had to figure out how to occupy my time while also feeling fulfilled in what I was doing. I began catching up on books (lots of books), I downloaded Duolingo to learn Spanish (which I am still very much invested in), I went on walks, I made sure to do 30 minutes of yoga everyday, I even took an online course with the London Business School to prepare myself even more for the world I was going to walk into. I was finally seeing a substantial schedule again, but there was something missing for me. Was it the work meetings that I was missing? The colleagues/networks? The job itself? Maybe all of it. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized that it wasn't so much the substance that I was missing, it was the choice of it all, the ability to make adjustments to my lifestyle, to do what I wanted and not be forced to.
I've had countless conversations with people about this and it is the choice factor for them too. It's the physical inability to change things beyond their four walls.
It wasn't until I picked up my film cameras in late 2020 that I began to feel something spark in me once again. These film cameras instantly became a part of me, pieces I would include in my life journey. I guess in a major way, these cameras were introduced to me at the perfect time- in a moment where I really needed them and my soul needed them. My mom used to tell me that everything was happening the way that it was because the world was trying to teach me to be more patient, how to enjoy every moment regardless of where I might be. And increasingly over time my film cameras have been teaching me the same.
I think a lot about my grandfather as I photograph and that if he was alive during this pandemic, he would be trying to capture these moments of coping, of discovery, of immense change through film photography just as I am now. I'm learning that it WILL all be okay, that I am in the right place and that societal or internal pressures won't do anything positive for my well-being.
How have your COVID-19 experiences been? Has the pandemic positively impacted you in some way?