COVID-19 outbreak. It’s slowly getting out of hand, like a scene from a movie. What is happening to the world? Why are we on the brink of living in fear? Will the rest of 2020 be like this? I was pondering over these questions last night. I couldn’t help it. On March 15, I rushed to do some groceries and bought enough to last for weeks because apparently, the National Capital Region (NCR) will be placed under a 30-day lockdown starting that evening.

The lockdown was supposedly to limit the movement of people in the NCR, seeing as how its population is too dense, and contain the spread of the Corona Virus or COVID-19, which has begun to wreak havoc in different parts of the world. It was supposed to be just NCR under lockdown, but on March 16, the president expanded the reach of the lockdown to include the entire island of Luzon. The term used was “enhanced community quarantine” (ECQ), and people were strictly prohibited from going out of their homes unless they are essential workers. Social/physical distancing is being promoted.

COVID-19 Is Distressing News

Seriously, the idea of a looming pandemic is hard to digest. I have relatives in different parts of the world, and I fear for their safety. Add to that the concern for my family and friends here in the Philippines. I didn’t want to stress myself out, but reality check: COVID-19 is real, and it’s distressing news.

Of course, the teeny bit of the optimist in me tried to convince myself otherwise. I thought to myself, if I want not to feel sad or distressed, all I need to do is not bother myself over every crappy, shitty stuff that goes on around me, much less wallow in distressing news. I figured distress, panic, and stress are all self-inflicted or self-induced.

Really, though, no matter how positive you are, reading the newspaper or watching the news is certifiably a downer. More so since there is no proven cure yet, heck, not even a vaccine. As I mentioned in the get-go, the entire situation is like a scene from a movie. We just don’t know yet if, like in the movies, a potent cure will be made before the entire world population is cut in half.

Scary thought, right? Do you see what I mean now? This entire situation puts a damper on even the most positive person’s thoughts. It can’t be helped. At this point, I am convinced that only faith in God, for the greater part, can save humanity.

The next couple of days, weeks, months will be crucial. If the ballooning curve is not flattened anytime soon, then living under quarantine may be the trend. I’ve only been locked inside the house with the family for two days, but I can’t imagine how the “outside world” is dealing right now. Most importantly, I can’t imagine how people who are affected by the virus are dealing with their situation. I know it’s not pretty. I can only anticipate what news reports will be like in the coming days.

However, I also know that now is not the time to succumb to panic. Yes, these are trying times. Uncertainty is the name of the game. Nevertheless, my faith helps me keep my focus. I guess it’s all a matter of having the right perspective. The power to shape one’s mood for the entire day is actually in one’s own hands. Life is both good and bad. So it’s up to each of us to decide whether we want panic to eat us up or fight it with presence of mind.

Oh, and it doesn’t hurt to pray, too. Cliche as it sounds, nothing is impossible with God.