The New, The Old and the Covid

The Winter Holidays have always given me a warm fuzzy feeling. It’s a time for family gatherings, presents and hopes. Hopes for a better future and possibly a better version of you. There is a sense of an upcoming re newel. 

We tend to dream just a little more around this time, “This year I will certainly achieve my dreams, get in shape and get closer with my loved ones. Or maybe I will find a lover, this could be a start to an exciting romance.” Every New Year is the year full of positive expectations. 

Even if some dreams and new year resolutions fall through in the end, New Year fills us with hope for better things to come. 

But things have shifted. Covid Cases are back on the rise, and it feels like we can’t catch a break. Just a week ago restaurants were buzzing with people and holiday cheer. Concert halls were entertaining their guests and pouring champagne during intermissions. We were preparing for holiday parties and gatherings: inviting friends and family, stocking up on wine and delicacies. Some were planning to marry during the Holidays, stylizing their weddings as winter wonderland. 

And then Covid data has started coming out. Venues have been told to limit their capacity. Some have closed their doors because of Covid outbreaks. Our plans have been altered or canceled all together. 

The hope for coming back to ‘normal’ is seemingly evaporating before our eyes. I feel that the mood has turned sour and dare I say a tad hopeless. There is a sense of exhaustion and anger as a lot of things are being cancelled so close to the Holiday time. There is also panic and many questions, “How long will this last? Are 2 vaccine shots not enough anymore? How helpful will a booster shot be?” And the most important one, “ When will this all end?” 

It has become hard to plan and ‘dream’ ahead. Six pack seems to be miles away as gyms are closed. Besides, do you really need one when travel is becoming increasingly difficult? 

Dating life is already hard. And how can you plunge into a romantic adventure when its challenging to even place a restaurant reservation? 

Can we even be optimistic and hopeful when many of the chances for self re-invention and for new experiences have been stolen away from us by Covid Grinch? 

I have been feeling low myself. I’ve been feeling stuck in the present with no plans for the future. However, maybe that is where pleasure is hiding, in the present. I think it’s important to appreciate the present pleasures that are available to us: music, cup of coffee, a hug. I don’t believe that these small little things will magically fix anxiety, Covid or generally a burden of life. Yet they might make things just a little more bearable, just a little better. 

And now we know that our plans and hopes are insignificant in grand scheme of things. We can’t fathom the future and in most cases we are powerless to shape it. All we have is present and the abyss of the future. 

With that in mind, maybe we can shift an outlook on New Year. New Year can be a representation of future hopes and endeavours. But it can also be an appreciation for now, for the fact that we have made it through another year in one piece. And that we get to celebrate it with loved ones, friends or even just with ourselves. The present moment that is worth appreciation. 




Guest Blogger Karina Nechaeva

Karina is new to the Sentinel Office Family but is no stranger to writing.

As her time in the office grows longer, we hope to hear much more from the wealth of information and experience that Karina has to offer!