By Abeeha Ali Pirzada
Humans have been granted the ability to adapt and adjust in accordance to the changes in life. Now the whole world is under the grasp of an extraordinary change named ‘COVID-19.’ It is funny how lines marking boundaries of a country act like a sheltering roof from the rest of the world; however now these lines have become blurred.
On 17 November 2019, when the first novel Coronavirus case was confirmed in Wuhan, China it still seemed far away, even though Pakistan shared a border with China. Even when this virus started to pose a threat to the world powers, we-Pakistani students felt safe. Though the fear of it was undeniably set in our hearts, but still we did not realise that this disease had the potential of bringing a halt to the world.
The first case of COVID-19 was confirmed in Sindh on 26 February. Schools were closed on 13th March, O-level student’s CAIE’s dates were postponed, all economic activities slowed down all around the world, psychological issues increased, tourism declined and most importantly the tawaf of the ka’bah stopped.
Till 2019, it was almost impossible to bring into account the possibility of a pandemic which would change the way the world was functioning, although some like Bill Gates had given a warning 5-years prior to this outbreak.
A number of sectors were affected, but for the students, academia faced the biggest upheaval.
To adapt to the ‘new normal’ of the world, interactive classes were introduced through different platforms like Zoom, MS Teams and WebEx etc. This have proved very significant in highlighting a fact to the students that ‘ lock-down is not a holiday’.
The government has kept bookshops open, which have provided full opportunity to the students to continue with their studies. However, this is just the beginning; there is a lot more to do in order to adjust to this World’s ‘new normal’ since it is not an issue of weeks or months, its aftermath is going to be much longer and would create greater issues either by further decreasing the literacy rates or by increasing unemployment, that would result in more crimes.
At this point of time asking a question (‘what will happen after school starts?’) is just the first of hundreds of other questions: ‘ would one be reluctant in socialising after quarantining for such a long time?’ ‘Would one’s behaviour in school be the same as before?’ ‘Would hands be shook like before?’ ‘Would sitting arrangements be changed?’ ‘Would one feel comfortable when buying food from the canteen?’ All of this remains to be seen for in the future!
However, every cloud has a silver lining. Lock-down have given students a chance to catch up and improve their weak points in studies. They have also gained an exposure of how the whole world is functioning on the pillars of remote technology, which is even in use by the top-notch organisations around the world.
In this scenario, we can keep pushing ourselves and adapting, despite this extraordinary occurrence which has shaken the world! In the end, hard work will truly pay-off in the form of a brilliant result card or as Colin Powell puts it: “there are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, & learning from failure.”