Lockdown

Lockout, lockdown, sanitiser, face masks, isolation – the new everyday language which is going to last for a few months to come – “ad infinitum”.

Different countries have implemented different strategies to combat the Coronavirus, now called COVID-19. COVID-19 sounds far more formal and official. The impact cannot be contended.

We are very fortunate that we live on an island – albeit a very large one – and we have been in isolation since late March and we were told to stay at home and we shut our state and national borders. We listened!

Cinemas were shut, dining not allowed, churches were closed, no unnecessary shopping (except for the large hardware chain stores), flying was out, no weddings, no parties, no school… no nothing.    

However, despite our fastidious action we forgot to isolate a few hundred tourists returning home from a cruise of a lifetime. But not to worry. This “minor oversight” only led to nearly a third of the reported deaths on our idyllic island. A further quarter of the deaths occurred in nursing homes. 

My work stopped. The only phone calls were to cancel photoshoots.

It is interesting to note how each state Premier tried to outdo the other with controlled and verbally guarded speeches, plans, advice, restrictions and top of the list, cash handouts (a glimmer of hope on an otherwise darkening horizon). It was not always clear how risk management was undertaken to make informed decisions, but we had faith… we are Australian, and we stand together.

It seemed to work. Seemed?! of course it did. There were less infections, fewer deaths, and the new infections daily count slowed down. The humane stories that emerged tugged at the heart strings – all unique, all heart rendering, all beautiful.

Just when we are on top of the infections, some chose to ignore the call to refrain from public demonstrations and by so doing to maintain a healthy distance from others. All caution thrown to the wind.

Is this because of complacency that leads to personal recklessness? Is it the strong desire to defy authority and to present to the world their cause and cohesive viewpoint?

What makes people do this when so much is still at risk.    

We are so close in the victory concerning this pandemic which no one could possibly have imagined with the festive entry of 2020 into our reality.  But it arrived and we faced the virulent virus with stalwart strategies.

One cannot sit back and enjoy victory.  Victory is never enjoyed on the Battlefield of Life, or science, or politics or personal relationships.  Victory is maintained with courage and endurance and care.  The relaxation of restrictions is not the Golden Ticket to careless freedom. 

We should not underestimate this virus or what it can do.  To date there has been almost 7 million recorded cases globally, of which nearly 2 million are in the Unites States and more than 400,000 deaths globally of which 109,746 deaths are in the US alone. To foolishly allow complacency to set in would somehow negate these untimely deaths.

I personally salute all those courageous people who tirelessly worked to keep us all safe and secure. These are the unsung heroes of COVID-19. We don’t know their names nor are we familiar with their faces, but their sacrifice and dedication can never be measured.