Two Lives

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An American friend was sharing a recent experience, something we will be experiencing soon. Getting out of lockdown. Try not to read or watch too much news, he advised. “It’s tough. We don’t need to be reminded repeatedly how bad the situation can be. If we look out for the bad, we can, especially now, easily find the worse. And the worse can quickly cross over to the darker than dark side.” But to look at the bright side, to stay positive in the face of a pandemic and financial meltdown can also appear misplaced, and it certainly can be the hardest thing to do. Unless, or until there is some form of an epiphany.

A Covid-19 patient who had yet to recover, was asked why she was joyous, almost happy. Her response was intoxicating. “With over 300 million people in America, I have to be among the one over million infected. In the past, I would be devastated by such misfortune, such bad luck. Life is short. I want to focus on my over 90 percent chance of recovery. The important thing is I am alive. I feel my best days are still yet to come. I believe this to be so…”

If someone tells you what the new normal is like, the new trends, the unprecedented hardships, tell this person to stop. No one really knows. Enough, we have heard enough. We know what we know. And we want to leave room for the unknown. As they say, ‘Trust the wait, embrace the uncertainty. When nothing is certain, everything is possible’. This Covid-19 patient is like sunshine mixed with hurricane, the rainbow after the rain. Listening to her as relayed by my American friend, I am reminded of an ancient sage, ‘We all have two lives. The second one starts when we realise we only have one’.

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