‘Flocking With the Right Birds?’
By Sharon Arnolda
There seems to be a word of the year and that is ‘Health’. Every single person on this planet right now is more concerned about this one aspect of their existence than they were a few years ago. From being told to wash our hands to being told how, when and what to do at every specific point to prevent the spread of the virus, as a world we are now understandably worried about our health. So, while all of this is going on and the pandemic is unfortunately hitting closer and closer to home; we are now losing the very people we love. People who were alive a month ago, aren’t anymore and this seems to be the unfortunate turn of events that we will be at for a while.
So while we are doing everything we physically can to be healthy; I feel another important aspect of our health is being neglected; our relationships with one another. The relationships we have with those around us play an important role in our lives, as social creatures that we associate with make up a large part of who we are as people. And one thing that has been undoubtedly affected by the pandemic is our relationships with each other. The inability to be physically present, even under these circumstances; unfortunately, has put a strain on many relationships.
Having said that, life gives lemon so here is me trying to make some lemonade; The pandemic on one end has shed a light on the many ‘good time’ friends in our lives; a blessing. With the inability to get s*** faced and things taking unexpected turns in the recent past, many friendships have been exposed for what they actually are. We have slowly but surely learned that friendship goes beyond the bar or the bottle. Many of us have faced the deaths of near and dear ones and faced struggles because of the pandemic; and as the saying goes, bad times reveal who the good friends are! So, this is the best time to re-evaluate your friend groups and look into why and how we are friends with certain individuals and what they bring into our lives.
A lot has been said about the people we spend time with, in a nutshell, ‘birds of a feather flock together’. In this period where we know the people we can count on, I think it's a good time to re-evaluate the birds we go back to flocking with. Disclaimer: this is not a cue to cut out everyone you disagree with or didn't reply to your game request, but a suggestion to genuinely use the time spent away from our usual friend groups to re-evaluate the company we keep. The pandemic has taught us that life is too short to hold onto things; a blessing in disguise.
The sudden deaths brought on by the pandemic highlights something we all know; the impermanence of life. And this brings us to another important aspect concerning the relationships in our lives. This is a wake-up call to evaluate the resentments and feelings we are holding onto; the relationships in our lives that are strained, having more time to make amends is increasingly starting to seem like a rapidly decreasing option.
The current situation is stressful in many ways, with very few things in our control. So it's a good time to make changes to those things that are within our control. The pandemic has shown us everything for what life is and its true worth. We unfortunately live in a world where a single pandemic is fattening the wallets of one part of society and starving and killing the rest; in such a world are we really at peace with the people we call ‘friends’ or ‘enemies’? I think both words have strong meanings and each of us should be mindful of who is in which category and be at peace with why they are there.