The year that was…

Tangerine Newt@unsplash.com

Grappling with the virus for a couple of years now, we are still trying to understand its variants and mutations. Scientists around the world are working tirelessly to bring in a panacea of sorts. While the vaccine does mitigate the effect of the attack, convincing the masses to take the jab, has also been a daunting task. Every time we seem to tread towards a semblance of normalcy, a new strain comes out, causing dread among the people.

Plans went awry, virtual and online modes became a way of life, mental health challenges came to the fore, sealed borders kept family members away, livelihoods were lost, dreams crushed… life derailed for many. The world experienced devastating effect of the virus. While we heard many endearing instances of people fight a brave battle against the invisible enemy, death knocked on the doors for many. The medical fraternity rising above their call of duty with relentless service, the common man joining hands together to garner help in every way possible was truly heartwarming, filling us with the hope that not all is lost. Man has learnt to accept, adapt and bounce back with resilience.

A cauldron of emotions flowed out during the year. Pain, agony, grief, heartbreak, fear and anxiety dominated our lives. Yet, on the other hand, bravery, kindness, empathy and selfless helping hands also rose up, adding a silver lining to the otherwise bleak scenario.

As we get ready to bid adieu to 2021, I look back at the year that it was and move forward with my learnings from it.

The pandemic definitely taught us to be prepared for unpredictability. Going by man’s callous attitude towards the environment, the frenzied pace at which he seems to be devouring the resources of the planet, volatility could just become a part of life. We need to brace ourselves with it.

Health is a priority. Invest in it, indulge in self-care, exercise without excuses. Make” balance and moderation” a key motto in life.

 Each new dawn we wake up breathing, is a precious gift. Appreciate the gift of today, be mindful of the blessings it showers on us and lace it with a prayer of gratitude.

We create excess baggage in life, burdening ourselves with never ending desires and frivolous wants. The pandemic taught us that one can lead a very comfortable life, being a minimalist.

Seek happiness in little joys, befriend a positive attitude, contribute to sustainability, lend a helping hand, stay away from all forms of toxicity and cherish the love and blessings of family and friends.

Finally reflect within. Along with material wealth, enrich your soul with spiritual growth as well.

As I type this, the Omicron strain is gripping the world at large. Hoping that the effect of this strain, will not be as bad as its predecessor.

Here is wishing you all a very happy and healthy 2022! Take care and stay safe !

Tanka – Diwali!

Pandemic days ebb

pirouetting flames of diya*

brightens festive mood

vibrant emotions dazzle

heralds celebration time

The dark shadows of the virus seem to drift away, as the winds of normalcy brings in a much-needed reprieve. With all things opening up and life returning to pre covid times, we pray for a better tomorrow. Hoping the sparkling conversations and sounds of laughter replace the din and smog of the crackers. Let’s illuminate our earth with the dazzle of love and peace.

Happy Diwali to all !

*earthen lamp

Changing Viewpoint!

Yesterday,

This was a view from my window

bustling life, honking cars, jostling crowds.

It narrated tales of people on the move,

and I loathed that cacophony.

Today,

A prisoner, within the walls of my home

I look at the eerie stillness of the deserted street.

The heart yearns to listen to sounds of hustle bustle

only to be greeted by the siren of the ambulance.

Tomorrow,

I pray that the new dawn is a harbinger of hope

bringing with it the gift of healing.

Life returns with its busyness

and this time,

 I would welcome the cacophony!

Sadje’s WDYS #82

Eugi’s weekly prompt : Viewpoint!

The Sphinx’s Lament…

Since time immemorial, my abode was

teeming with people from across the world.

Intrigued by the myths that shroud me,

photographers, writers and tourists

thronged to experience my mystic aura.

The gales filled me with the echoes of

 chatter and clicks of the shutterbugs.

Always, the center of attraction,

there was  never a dull moment in my life.

Life across the globe changed drastically,

 the gloom of the pandemic, cast an ominous shadow.

Today, the gales sing a melancholic tune

bringing in silent grains of sand.

I am deserted, in this vast desert,

lonely and desolate, scanning the roads,

trying to hear voices, in the eerie stillness of time.

Sadje’s : WDYS #80

V. J’s weekly challenge : Roads

Who’ll feed me?

Image credit; Gabriella Clare Marino@ Unsplash

A small café out in the suburbs, I owned

sunshine hues ushered in a happy mood

regular clientele stayed loyal

life was modest, yet I was content, until last year.

Life has never been the same since,

with the doors of my café forced shut

the pandemic’s shadow cast a gloomy spell,

 lockdown came as an inexorable curse.

The affluent, whine about being confined indoors

but think not about the many like me.

I, who once served meals to so many

today, struggle to feed myself!

Sadje’s What do you see #78

V.J’s weekly Challenge : I’m Bored

Reflective Space!

lighted incense
Denis Oliveira@unsplash.com

The second wave of the pandemic has gripped many parts of the world.  With a steep spike in daily cases, an untold anxiety and fear cripples the mind. A home today has a wider purview to be more inclusive. With members of the family confined indoors, working from home, online classes, everything under the same roof, there is bound to be some amount of mayhem…. a clash of schedules and tempers. Bedrooms and living rooms converted into office/school, the table is strewn with many gadgets, paper and all kinds of accessories. The video call at odd times, demands the voice decibels to remain low. Imagine one’s own room has restricted entry today.  A great deal of tenacity is required to cope up with the deluge of mental stress hitting us from all directions.

We all have, to some extent found our own mechanisms to handle the uncertainties surrounding us today. My sacred space is a small alcove in my home, where I have silent conversations with myself, indulge in some self-love, heal my pain and calm my mind. Believe me, this quiet time with myself in my cozy corner, is helping me a great deal to maintain my sanity, in an otherwise cacophonic home today.

Empower the mind to deal with turbulent emotions

created by the ripples of life.

Diffuse the torrent, channelize a path,

indulge in holistic living.

Spend solitary moments in mindful silence,

ruminate on the breath.

 Let the receptive ears soak in the serenading

 harmony of nature.

Allow the incessant tears flow from the closed eyes,

cleansing the impurities from the system.

With focussed reflection,

the confluence of the body and mind

transcends beyond the realm of universe.

Feel the abundance of divine energy manifest within,

cradling the self with a healing light.

As a benign balm of spiritual ecstasy fills it,

a sense of empyreal peace pervades.

Finally the,

mind is empowered to deal with the turbulent emotions!

Reena’s exploration challenge #181 : Sacred space

Eugi’s weekly prompt : Reflections

Insipid Life!

Once upon a time, a vivacious girl was she.

Jewels of happy times dazzled her cache of memories.

Her persona emanated a sprightly laughter,

until the pandemic struck.

Locked down within the four walls,

online, virtual space conquered her life.

With friends and family imprisoned on the screen

tentacles of loneliness clasped her breath.

Silent voices screamed within her head,

with thoughts, lost in the labyrinth of anxiety.

Her once effervescent soul, today is anemic.

The Covid-19 pandemic has forced schools, colleges and educational institutions to shut down since March last year. At an age when the primary fulfilling factor is interaction with classmates and enjoying school-life, a shutdown has wreaked havoc in the daily life of students. We have seen an alarming rise in the mental health problems faced by them. Acknowledging this issue with timely treatment can make a significant difference in helping them cope better with the situation.

Reena’s exploration challenge #174

Eugi’s weekly prompt : Jewel

“Trained” to be on the run…

Before the pandemic struck us, a typical scene from any city around the globe was very similar. At the end of a long day at work, a swarm of people would rush to the stations, their heads down, glued to their mobiles.  Oblivious of their surroundings or fellow passengers, most of them would be immersed in work or on a call. Sapped of energy, they would chug along to reach home, every day, defining life, in its mundanity.

The pandemic brought the life’s train to a grinding halt. The sudden impact left man totally lost, throwing him completely off track. The lock down has to a great extent, initiated a change to his perspective on life and its meaning. All this time he was chasing a mirage, mistaking success for happiness, in the bargain turning a blind eye to those little things, that added value to life.

Today, man has slowed down the pace at which he is traversing on this journey of life. He has realised if his life’s train derails and its journey comes to an abrupt end, before reaching its last station, his pursuit for hollow victories may after all be in vain.

Life is a sojourn between birth and death. One should enjoy the beauty of the changing landscape, being present each moment, for each stop brings with it an experience, before its time for us to alight at the final destination.

Sadje’s WDYS #63

The Question Remains…

Lock Down, Lock, Year, Nostalgia, Era, Door, Metal
epicioci@pixabay.com

Lock down changed life forever

redefined many facets.

We tasted virtual reality bites

embraced a minimalistic approach,

nature rejuvenated, when we were caged.

Emotions came about in a mixed bag.

Familial bonds recharged with great vigor

skills honed, connections renewed.

Some had to endure the pangs of separation,

mental health issues rocked a few.

The health workers are true warriors

fighting an enemy unknown.

The harsh plight of migrant workers

brought to fore, many kind souls amongst us,

 reaching out with helping hands,

 the blessed, bowed down in gracious thanksgiving.

Now all masked up, as we unlock our cages,

this question continues to torment me…

Will man emerge wiser from the pandemic?

will we respect this freedom now

or

will we go back to our old ways?

Reena’s exploration Challenge #163

V. J’s weekly challenge #123 Warriors

Just a thought…

FlorianKlauer@unsplash.com

Though the pandemic is ready to celebrate its first birthday in a couple of months, it is still the topic of conversation. Life turned topsy-turvy since its arrival. The virus,  its spread, prevention and recovery analysis, social distancing, the side effects of too much digital time, mental health, immunity boosters, lock down blues, unlock phase have all dominated discussions across the globe.

A question popped up recently during one such talk we were having at home.

Thanks to the giant strides in technological progress and the global link, everything or everyone today can be virtually connected to.  Online business, work from home, virtual classrooms, zoom meetings are all trending today. Though not in physical form, things are happening across the digital platforms sans the actual joy of meeting and bonding. Life is moving on, slowly limping back on track.

Coming back to the question, what if the pandemic was born earlier, in the pre digital era, say in the 1970’s or 80’s? How would people cope with work and school? What about buying their groceries and milk? And the numerous other things which we today do online with ease.

How would man have dealt with such a situation back then?

What are your thoughts on this?  Do share!!

%d bloggers like this: