Tag is exactly grief
2020-10-06On every family vacation we'd ever taken, I was the designated photographer. It was my job to catch the monuments, and the murals and pictures of my brothers dancing at amusement parks. I was reluctant at first but I improved and every year when we got home, I couldn't be prouder of my little collection. It became a tradition, maybe a week or so after, to look through the album and remember the adventures we had. During those moments, life was beautiful and we were on top of the world. A few years ago as we flipped through a set of photos, my father looked at me and said that we needed to take more videos. I laughed at him but he explained that photos were never enough-you wanted to feel and see and be a part of that memory, and videos were the closest thing to it: a captured moment in time. Of course, I agreed. Even when we weren't on vacations, I was taking photos of us at weekend excursions, at the grocery store, washing our little red car...I could go on for hours and hours but today, I won't. When the Covid-19 pandemic hit, I was excited to document this new chapter in our lives which included many DIY home improvements, my failed attempt at a flower garden and sleepovers with my brothers. It was definitely an adjustment. Later on in the year, about late September, my father got sick. He was our designated shopper, our designated driver, our designated everything really so it wasn't surprising but I continued to take photos. I thought to myself, when he gets better, we'll be able to look back on this album on laugh. He spent that first week in quarantine with piles of pills and jugs of orange juice. I spent that first week peeking through the door separating us and taking photos through the window. He would always see me and wave; so much for my candid photos. His birthday rolled around almost a week later and although he was sick, he managed a bite of the worst birthday cake I've ever made but of course, he smiled. I heeded his earlier advice and took photos of his birthday card, his (failed) birthday cake, and a video of us singing to him through the door. He was getting better and life was good. About a week later, my album was filling up and I was sure it would be ending soon because we'd seen some improvements. Unfortunately, he plateaued with his recovery. In the blink of an eye, the subject of my album had gotten weak and frail, and before I could hold on to him, he slipped away. Needless to say, I was devastated-we all were and time seemed to halt. For months, I couldn't look at that album because it was a constant reminder that it didn't have the happy ending that I wanted. But now, my thoughts have changed. I miss my father every day but his passing has reminded me to hold on tight to the things that he taught me. I always remember that he'd say that he was living life and seeing good days and looking back, I'm so grateful that we have those albums as a permanent reminder of all the fun we've had, the mischief we'd gotten into and the life we'd been blessed to enjoy together. I don't want to focus on the things I've lost but instead on what I've gained and that's a greater appreciation for all the people who love and support me. Don't forget to take those photos, make sure you have the sound up when you're recording your videos, but never forget to just live in the moment. That's what this pandemic has taught me.
2020-06-06This was my experience as an essential worker during the Covid pandemic.
2020-03-13My covid experience this year is probably a lot like others. I've lost family members to this pandemic my close friends lost loved ones as well. There are a plethora of people I know who have lost their jobs, gained severe diagnosis of anxiety and also depression. Being stuck in the house for all those months with family was a very strenuous task and it was also very debilitating as well. While the covid outbreak started my family and I were sent into a frenzy mentally and physically. My mother lost her job due to the pandemic and I had to pick up more hours at work and do other side jobs to somewhat help with the expenses as well also during this pandemic i was also in school. Attending Brooklyn College during the pandemic was a very difficult thing to do especially due to the fact that we had transitioned to online learning, something I or my teachers haven't really done in some time. The social distance learning that was implemented was a very difficult concept to grasp because one day we go from attending class everyday to the bombardment of information being thrown at us and us as students expected to keep up and also the teachers having to make sure they kept up with the requirements. School, going to work and worrying about the well being of others and myself put me into a state of worry at all times sort've giving me mild ptsd. I hope that this time next year this covid situation will be gone and we can go back to living the way we were.