What Covid-19 has taught us: A lesson on life
May 22, 2021 | Contributed by Simran Sagar
Let me start this blog by asking you, the reader, a very simple question first.
This is perhaps one positive that the pandemic might have brought about.
Human connection and how integral it is for emotional survival.
We are all chiming in with people near and far, close or an acquaintance to ensure that all is well. Because life is that precious and this has been a harsh realisation for us all.
I can say that in almost every household in our country this pandemic has wreaked some kind of havoc, whether it is fear or actually suffering the grips of the virus or the void that emerges from losing people to it.
I write this blog sitting in Goa, which in an ideal situation would have sounded like paradise…. But I am in the same boat as I was living in Gurugram, as I came here to look after my sister post her diagnosis and recovery from Covid. Working from home, trying to manage the house, my 9-year-old and just ensuring all precautions are taken with great vigor so we can stay safe and healthy. The Almighty has been kind to us and for that I am grateful everyday.
My role in our Foundation, that works towards heart treatment for underprivileged children, is to oversee all the operations and projects to ensure we are able to Save Little Hearts.
Being in the healthcare space when the pandemic started in March 2020, we were definitely on tenterhooks for some time as families feared bringing their children to metro cities for treatment or funding declined as obviously the more pressing need has been COVID care. Every year there are 200,000-250,000 children being born with a heart defect…they are still being born, they still need help – we are just pacing it out and doing what is possible with heart treatment for underprivileged children, especially during a second wave where even our partner hospitals have turned into COVID facilities.
It definitely took some time to adjust to being home constantly at the beginning, but sooner or later we all succumbed to our four walls, sanitisers, masks, pedantic grocery wiping or washing, meetings, birthdays and anniversaries on Teams, Zoom or Google Meet. When the virtual meetings first started, they were exciting and new! Let’s see how many backgrounds we can change to make it look like we are actually sitting in the Bahamas, but earlier this year I think we all craved traveling to work, office lunches, physically present team meetings and the same thing I mentioned above –human connection.
We are a small team of seven people and I applaud each and every team member in our Genesis Foundation family as they have ensured smooth running so we can save lives despite personal hardships. There are some who are living far away from their homes and families, that too in a completely new city. Others who are separated from their children due to concern of their well-being and work commitments, and recently two who have been affected by the virus but by God’s grace are doing much better. Each person we work with, engage with has a story during these times that tests our compassion and flexibility as humans and even as an organisation.
Right now, it is not about chasing numbers of achieving the maximum number of children supported, or ensuring gender equality or conducting screening camps or executing any other awareness and intervention plans – right now it is a matter of taking what we get, living each day as it comes and giving it our best.
Yes, that means giving extra attention to the families that come to us with the guidance and reassurance we offer to expel their fears of getting their little ones operated in the current circumstances. Since all cases under our belt currently are emergencies, there is a dire need for them to take place, so the child survives. A complicated congenital heart defect will not wait for the pandemic to ride out, so we have to be there.
Change as they say is the only constant. So, with the current scenario being grim and life having done a full 360, each one of us regardless of our designations or line of work need to just remember nothing precedes LIFE, at the Foundation we swear by these words of wisdom… without life, there is nothing. It is important at this time to just be under the radar, do what we can, take precautions, check in on people and take extra care of those around us, including ourselves. When this wave passes we look forward to getting back into the hospitals and interior parts of the country to screen as many little hearts as possible, and take a pause from the digital world and rebuild that physical human connection.
Let the beat go on – steady and healthy.