Gratitude: A quality I discovered during the pandemic

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During the 2nd wave of the Covid pandemic what lesson did you learn? I learnt the importance of gratitude. So, what is gratitude? It is the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.

When I saw a woman giving CPR to her dying husband in an attempt to save him, a helpless mother sitting in an auto on whose feet her dead son’s corpse lay, bodies being cremated in hundreds across crematoriums in the country, hundreds of dead bodies floating down the Ganga and thousands being buried on the river bank, all Covid patients of hospitals dying together due to lack of oxygen and many such scenes, one can feel nothing other than gratitude that I and my loved ones survived the dreaded second wave of the pandemic.

I am filled with gratitude that I am alive and so are my loved ones. Because if at all any of us were to have contacted the virus we don’t know what our fate would have been today. We could have been just another nameless number.

A friend of mine, whose father contacted the Corona virus, was on ventilator for days, she says she said a silent prayer that if her father reached home safely she will never ask for anything in her life ever. That she will work towards helping others who require help. Her prayers were answered when after a month almost after battling Covid her father returned home. Now she works with an online Covid help group which tries to provide information regarding beds, ICU beds, oxygen cylinder availability throughout the country. She says she also prays for our healthcare workers and thanks them every day for their selfless work. 

As for me I have donated small amounts to various NGOs and groups who are providing free oxygen cylinders and food to the needy. I also try and amplify the availability of resources which might be useful to patients and their family members though my social media platforms. I also helped to keep up the morale of a person who was admitted in a hospital and was fighting the virus,I call up friends and relatives to know of their well-being. I also listen to people who are depressed and sacred. These are small things but these are the only things I could do from the safety of my home considering that I had to keep in mind that I have an eighty-year-old elderly  and a daughter who is nine-years-old at home. I took these small steps because I was filled with gratitude and could not remain a mute spectator to the needs of others.

Times are such that each one of us, who are safe, healthy and happy should be filled with thankfulness. Because only than you are filled with kindness and are enthusiastic to lend a helping hand. We need to be appreciative of the selfless services our healthcare workers like doctors, nurses, ward boys, sanitation workers and owners of medical stores have provided. In fact the world should be grateful to the medical fraternity which include companies who are producing medicines, vaccines and other medical equipment for us round the clock.

Yes, the world has changed, we have changed and our priorities in life have changed. But most of all gratitude should be a part of our lives now. Think of all the things you are grateful for today. Be kind.

(The views expressed are the writer’s own)

Smita Singh is a freelance writer who has over 17 years of experience in the field of print media, publishing, and education. Having worked with newspapers like The Times of India (as freelancer), National Mail, DainikBhaskar and DB Post, she has also worked with Rupa& Co, a book publishing house and edited over 30 books in all genres.

She has worked with magazines like Discover India and websites called HolidayIQ and Hikezee (now Go Road Trip). She has also written for Swagat (former in-flight magazine of Air India), Gatirang (magazine of MarutiUdyog), India Perspectives (magazine for Ministry of External Affairs) and Haute Wheels (magazine of Honda).

After turning freelance writer she wrote on art and architecture for India Art n Design. She also worked for Princeton Review as a full-time Admissions Editor and then IDP Education Private Limited as an Application Support Consultant. Smita has her own website called bookaholicanonymous.com which supports her love for books and reading!

You can reach her at: [email protected]

(Collage with images from the net)

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