‘Please tell my mum my dad is not going to die,’ his voice breaks. Tears take over. I close my eyes. My soul travels all over the world, we are spread over three different continents, we couldn’t have been further away from one another, but we feel more connected than ever. Covid-19 has been a time full of contradictions.
Trust and Mistrust
‘He isn’t going to die, right?’ he looks for my confirmation on the potentially fatal question. I tell him about what I know about Covid-19, about the people I know that have been through it, about my sister working in the hospital, about the images and videos reaching me via social media.
I puzzle the information to a consistent image, a consistent story with a happy ending.
But, little do I know how the story will end, for his father this is just the beginning.
His father does not live in a country where you want to be hospitalised. A web of corruption has been woven over the country’s health care system, yet, within it are caught good nurses and doctors as well. He has to thrust on the system, even though it might not always be trustworthy. I don’t belief in God, but this is the moment you wished you could thrust on an external power. Thrust and mistrust.
Love and Hate
Covid-19 has shown me a lot of contradictions. It has taught me to love and to hate, to thrust and to distrust. It has taught me to laugh and to cry, to run and to stand still, to live fast and slow. It has taken my breathe, and taught me how to take a breath. It taught me to keep on going, and to stop; it taught me to hold on and let go.
The lockdown itself, was the tremendous contradiction of our fast running societies having put on pause. Standing still, turning within and having a real look at what was going on, while remaining in the dark about what was going on around us.
In those breaking lines of contradictions, light fell in and enlightened certain values and beliefs. It unveiled truths we believed, and lies we had constructed, values we lived up to, and values we forsake.
On those frightening, fragile lines Covid-19 took the opportunity to teach us lessons we couldn’t have had otherwise. ‘A man learns by fighting, solely,’ said my friend the other day, ‘maybe Covid-19 is beating us all a lesson. Maybe this is how even my father will learn certain things about life.’ Love and hate.
‘A man learns by fighting, solely’
The Dots and the Line
As from now on the speed will pick up again. With every easing restriction, the speed level will increase; a radar will be put back in place of the complicated machine. Once back at full speed, we might have no time to reflect; we might forget the lessons; we might take for granted what we have come to know now that shouldn’t be taken for granted.
‘I love my parents; I forgive them for all they did, and they forgave me.’ He continued confident and broken at the same time. ‘That forgiveness has set me free. And it has set my father free. Before they brought him to hospital, he knew it was going to be bad. He asked forgiveness to my mum, to my siblings.’ They understood.
Forgiveness has set me free
In the face of the death we realise how we are all human. We all have our stories that shaped our thinking, our behaviour. We don’t know those stories until we take the time to really listen; and to set ourselves free. Until we take the time not to judge, but to forgive.
In the awaken of the death, so many facts turn out to be the details of our timelines, not the major dots, let alone the line itself.
Gain and Pain
‘I thought he was recovering, I even talked with him last night,’ he continues his story. ‘But then he had this crisis. His longs did not absorb the oxygen of the bottles. Too weak. They had to intubate him. The ventilator had to take over the task of his longs.’ Silence. Tears got swallowed.
‘He will fight, won’t he?’
I confirm I belief his father is a fighter, a strong man, a brave man. He will fight, I hope.
And there, in the middle of the night, lost between continents and time zones, the struggle of one man becomes the thin but meaningful connecting line between a handful of people all over the world. While this man is struggling for every breath to take, we have this breath-taking experience of overall connecting love, thrust, and forgiveness.
We’re all humans, with our own stories and values. We make mistakes, and have our flaws, even our parents that are ought to be superheroes when we get born, but turn out to be humans as well while becoming older.
During Covid-19 our values and stories have been questioned, and some of them have been drastically changed. The day we wake up in the post-Corona world, I hope us to remember them. The values. The stories. The contradictions. The lessons.
Too often you (nearly) have to lose something or someone, before you understand the real value.
Too often real value follows only after real loss.
Therefore, next posts will be dedicated to those values, to those potential losses, we should embrace, we should gratify, and honour, during or not during times of Corona.
This article is part of the series of Hope in Times of Corona. Read
- How this too shall pass
- how this times of self-isolation should not mean loneliness,
- how you can contribute to this battle,
- how gratitude lights up the dark,
- how united we will stand strong
- on the most util strategy in awake of a crisis
- how I got blown of my feet as well, but caught by many caring hands,
- how being calm can get us through the storm.
- about Love in Times of Corona
- how to discover your own talents
- why we need stories to hold on to
- how you can be creative and innovative.
- how to spend your mot valuable assets in times of Corona.
- how to listen to the sound of silence.
- How breath taking Corona really is.
- discover the other freedoms Corona has shown us,
- about the new-born freedom Corona gave us.
- about another way to exceed your personal bubble.
- about the position of nature in this entire story
- about nature bouncing back
- about the crucial choice between resilience and resistance
- about the game to play
- about star gazing in dark times
- About looking for Meaning
- About how Music Connects
- about what Easter and Corona have in Common
- About the Shark and the Turtle
- About the Irony of Distance
- Why to Hold on
- Fake News
- about The Big Unknown we live at
- about Feeling Alive
- About turning obstacles into opportunities
- about what the Birthday of my nephew learned me about life
- About where we should go from here?
- About coping with incertitude
- About the Great War and the Great Pandemic, and we should not forget
- about history’s most important message, echoed by corona
- How one country could rule them all
- About how to prevent the next Green Pandemic
- about how we are experiencing a new episode of our history books
- about when the poppy flowers
- about what’s in a number
- masks off, how a friend in need is a friend indeed
- What’s Next. after we flattened the curve?
- how will our personal story look like in a post-corona world?
- why we should never let a good crisis go too waste.
- How Spring can happen in Autumn
- How to unlock the lockdown
- Why education matters
- How we can give meaning to the meaningless deaths. (rethink health care)
- The remarkable marketability of health, or not?
- the remarkable rewards of health
- The queeste for global health care
- Health Heroes
Or wait until tomorrow, when I’ll shine another light on yet another positive corner of this dark times.