IN THIS period of the pandemic, life has become a bargain—reduced to a punching bag by an invincible enemy lurking in the dark, itching to inflict debilitating pain to anybody it caught fancy with, like the pasaway (recalcitrant) and gahi’g ulo (hard-headed), as the authorities would conveniently name those who defy its warnings and protocols.
Indeed, at no other time in our recent past have we felt too much fear for our lives than when the Covid-19 virus stealthily struck us like the thief in the night. We cower in fear at the thought of contracting the virus and become the carrier ourselves or at the chance of seeing our loved one painfully struggling to extricate the virus from the weakened self. Living in the world at this benighted period became restricted to the physically and mentally strong and to those compliant of government’s edicts and protocols, no matter that it means confinement in home, isolation in quarantine center, loss of work and income, and enduring involuntary hunger. But we know that the virus respects no boundary or status in life—rich or poor, they’re fair game.
As they say, life must go on. So we plod along, conscious of the virus hanging over us with mouth agape, ready to pounce on the hapless at no moment’s notice. For isn’t life designed to be lived by? As in moving ahead no matter what the obstacles are, to go up where we wanted to, to achieve our goals, and to conquer that which gets in the way. Life is never meant to be without meaning and purpose, even in tragedies such as this pandemic where all the more extra care is needed to retain normalcy or better still to get a semblance of it.
And, as we go along, treading the path assigned to us, we take time to pause and ponder on the definition of life, as seen through the eyes of David McNally. He said: “Life is a gift...accept it. Life is an adventure... dare it. Life is a mystery... unfold it. Life is a game... play it. Life is a struggle... face it. Life is beauty... praise it. Life is a puzzle...solve it. Life is opportunity... take it. Life is sorrowful... experience it. Life is a song... sing it. Life is a goal... achieve it. Life is a mission... fulfill it.”