Beyond reasonable doubt, the world and almost everything in it has, in one way or another, been affected by the Novel Corona Virus 2019. In the early stages of the pandemic, I used to unashamedly imagine that the virus was limited to the whites. I am not racist, by the way. However, my imagination was quickly rendered null and void when the virus made its debut in my homeland, Kenya. This event forced me to change my perspective on a whole load of things in life.

Of course, the change did not occur overnight, because after realizing that the virus was not just for the whites, I decided to imagine that it was for the rich instead. There are wealthy Kenyans now, aren’t there? You ask why? Well, the first victim of COVID was a young lady who had just returned from a business-related world tour. And people don’t tour the world on bicycles.

Anyway, I was wrong. Again. It seemed like the virus cared less about whether one was red, yellow, black, or white. It infected regardless of race. And it killed regardless. If only our government and the world at large was as indiscriminative as this deadly virus!

It also appeared to me that this coronavirus did not give a hoot about how much was in your bank account, m-pesa (mobile money app), or wallet. It infected Prime Ministers of first world nations as well as the common mwananchi (citizen). In short, money was silenced in the face of the virus. Quite the opposite of how money talks loudest in the fight for justice, don’t you think?

Another thing that this COVID-19 has helped me perceive is that bad thing are accompanied by good things too. What I mean is that just because something is so bad doesn’t mean it can’t possess any good elements. This is such a huge, underestimated lesson. I mean, how many times do we face heart-breaking situations, and instead of accepting, adapting, and advancing, we just sink into our sadness and allow despair to take over our lives? Has complaining ever changed the situation? Has staring at a closed-door ever made you see another open door? Your guess is as good as mine. I admit this virus has taken so many lives and affected so many institutions of life, but that doesn’t mean that it has stopped us from living our lives to the fullest.

I’ve gained so much from staying at home than what I would have learned if I were consumed by school, work, or such. People have unlocked the treasure chests that were buried deep within them by work, school, and general worries of life and uncovered valuable gems that were longing to be discovered. People have found new hobbies and leisure time activities that have given them great satisfaction, such as cooking, gardening, and farming. People have invested much more time in their families and consequently gained a better understanding of their members. Many have also tried out new things that have since become part and parcel of them.

This has been the biggest lesson for me during this time. Yes, you may have lost your job, but you have found time to discover an alternative, more fulfilling way of making money. You may have had your academia cut short, but you have found time to find out new, better ways to drink from the inextinguishable cistern of wisdom and knowledge. You may have received the heart aching news of a pay cut, but you have found time to bond with your family and celebrate the little joys of life. You may have missed your church services, but you have found a good time to understand and improve your relationship with God. You may have unfortunately lost your loved ones, maybe due to the coronavirus or other circumstances, but you have found time and a decent environment to heal and find comfort in close friends and family. 

“Let us learn not to dwell on our losses but on the valuable lessons we learn from them.” Christabel Rewe, a medical student at Moi University says.