This week’s personal pandemic heroes: a sister, a best friend, a mom, K-dramas, students and a beloved pup.
She’s done it all
Each household has assigned one person to be a front-liner. Ours is my sister Hanna, my only sister among seven siblings. Hanna resigned from her job as a social worker at an orphanage, without knowing all this would happen. So she decided to be the family’s front-liner.
From managing the monthly finances, going out to the market to buy stuff and then cleaning and sanitizing them to cooking delicious and healthy meals, helping our nephews with their lessons and making sure everyone in the family (especially our nephews) is safe—she’s done it all with flying colors!
Now that she’s landed a new job at an NGO (nongovernmental organization), she continues to assist our mom in doing all those things. Our family appreciates and loves her so much for all the things she’s done for us! Props to all the front-liners of every household! —David Soterio San Jose
I live by myself but I never feel alone, thanks to my dog, Yoshi. It’s hard not to smile when you look at him! He also does something every day that makes me laugh. I’ve convinced several other friends to get dogs and each of them have thanked me because their dogs have helped them survive the pandemic, too! —Liz Claudio
For me it’s not a person. Been drowning myself in K-drama—shallow, feel-good, no-stress K-drama with not much drama like “Strong Woman Do Bong-Soon,” “What’s Wrong with Secretary Kim?” and now I’m rewatching “Goblin” because at least I know how it will turn out and what’s gonna happen next. —Tina Cabanayan
I’m a full-time multimedia specialist and a part-time college instructor. Every Saturday, I teach typography and layout to my multimedia arts students at Faith Colleges. So hosting online classes and talking nonstop for an hour (even with their cameras off, making you feel like you’re talking to a concrete wall) is somehow therapeutic for me.
You work from home and your only means of communication with your colleagues and friends is through social media. At home, you’re with your family 24/7. So you miss having actual conversations with other people. Having a moment to keep
up with others and exchange opinions with them about important matters even once a week somehow makes this social isolation more tolerable.
So I want to thank my students for always attending my class, despite the challenges of online learning. You have no idea how relieving it is to speak your mind at times when everything seems routine. —Dexter Balita
Pulling through with a vengeance
My mom is my lockdown heroine! After the first few months of last year’s lockdown where she actually spent some time crying, she pulled through with a vengeance. She made sure she kept busy, and the things she does are worth her while.
A year shy of 70, she single-handedly planted her own farm-to-table garden that now lets our family harvest veggie ingredients for pinakbet or tinola. She reconnected with her high school friends, learned to put stickers on chats and even post stories na nahihiya ang ka-titahan ko.
She used to stick to the classics when cooking, but since the pandemic, she began exploring new cuisines like making her own empanadas and gyoza! Now she’s getting the hang of online ordering. She has taken to personal shopping, too, discovering a kuya rider to get everything she needs from fresh seafood to stuff she likes at S&R. Best of all, no matter that our event place business has closed because of the pandemic, she remains hopeful and faithful that, as many mothers like her would say, this, too, shall pass.
Easy to think and feel that this pandemic wreaked havoc on my life, but look, my mom’s been stuck at home for a year and she’s pulled through with a positive outlook. I couldn’t possibly break down when I have a mother who’s shown me courage and resilience through all this, and I have a feeling she’s not stopping! —Ana Felizardo-Mendez
My best friend Angelique
My pandemic hero would have to be my best friend Angelique.
I remember getting a call from Angelique the minute the lockdown was announced. She already knew that I would be at a loss as to what to do first. She patiently calmed me down and talked me through all of it. Her daily random memes/Twitter finds are her attempts to keep the situation a little lighter.
She made sure that we remained in touch every day to update each other on our physical and mental health.
There were also moments when she did not need to say or do anything to show me that she was there.
When my dad had a heart attack and I shut everyone out, she knew how to be there for me from a distance. She let me deal with it in my own way and never forced me to talk to her or open up. My dad eventually recovered and when I felt ready to talk to people again, she was the first person I called. She picked up on the first ring, and no questions asked, she just listened to me.
Angelique has been saving me even before this pandemic and more so now. I wouldn’t be able to go through all of this without her. —KZ Macam INQ