The Greater The Storm, The Brighter The Rainbow
Why is Christmas celebrated by people? Christmas celebrations are one of the most social gatherings where people are bound in close proximity. It is meant to be joyous at times. People often attend church, organize family gatherings, and decorate their homes and businesses with Christmas trees and decorations. People feel the giving spirit and donate their time and money to worthy causes, or provide volunteer services to the needy. It is also celebrated as a secular holiday when people talk about Santa Claus and Rudolf the Rednosed Reindeer.
Christmas is the busiest time of the year. But unfortunately, our current global pandemic situation could impact the biggest holiday of the year for many. These past few months have been tough for everyone. A lot of people have been infected and died across the world and lockdowns have been ordered in numerous countries.
So how can we celebrate Christmas? This pandemic changes everything from how we work, play and learn. People are afraid and cautious about interactions. With social distancing, people separate themselves from other parts of society.
Not being able to be with friends that they usually do is hard. Schools are being closed and people have been asked to work remotely. Most businesses and shops are being closed, resulting in the unemployment of lots of employees. Some are only offering takeouts and deliveries, Establishments like grocery stores and pharmacies have enacted new policies limiting the number of people inside. Wearing face masks and face shields are also recommended especially in public settings where social distancing measures are difficult to maintain. No more pool parties and travel goals in summer. Flights are being cancelled and postponed and events on hold. Life for some is still a standstill, while front line workers are facing a frightening situation. The pandemic may mean we’re not in for a very merry Christmas, either.
Truly this pandemic has a lot of dark sides. People get ill and die, the healthcare system is overloaded, unemployment and bankruptcy. But no matter how sad and serious all of this is, there are upsides as well. There are not only threats but also opportunities.
The fact that the pandemic disrupts our daily lives provides an opportunity to reflect things and to reconsider what, how and why we do it. Things we took for granted suddenly may not be possible anymore. This offers a great opportunity to rethink our habits or routines and make changes. The current situation forces people to make changes in their daily lives that they might actually want to keep also after the crisis.
Suddenly, theatres, cinemas, restaurants, bars, sports clubs, gyms, festivals and concerts are all cancelled or forbidden, and still, life goes on, giving people extra time.
Over the past few years, families tended to see each other in passing. People are staying late at work while kids have to go to practice, games and recitals. Family dinners are often uncommon since everyone is on the go. Now that most of us are on lockdown, people will somehow appreciate family more now since they have to spend time with each other in such an unexpected way.
The pandemic also shows that, as soon as there is enough stimulus, things can be changed. This leads to innovations. With restaurants not able to open their doors, they shift to delivery mode. Schools do the teaching and testing online.
The biggest upside to this global pandemic situation is the improvement and healing of the environment. Factories are closed or operate far below their capacity, road traffic has reduced and the lack of tourism has emptied the streets, most especially on overcrowded cities. While this may be bad news for most people and industries, this is a piece of good news for our planet. The significant reduction in greenhouse gasses and other air, water and land polluting outputs.
This crisis creates a chance of awareness for the moderate role we play on this planet and accept that things cannot always go as we want them to go. This shows that no matter how well-planned and organized we are, we are not in control. Challenging times offer a great opportunity for connecting to and helping people. Not being able to visit friends or family has increased isolation and feelings of loneliness in some cases. But the feeling of “we’re all in this together” has also triggered interesting ways of connecting.
Fear not. Christmas is far from being cancelled. Santa and his elves will surely be working with their PPE and have been social distancing in the regularly disinfected toy factory. Despite our current situation, we can still create a Christmas to remember in so many ways. It can and will still be special and memorable and fun.
With Christmas Day this Friday, it would be great to be filled with the spirit of the season, joy and thanksgiving for all that we have with the people around us. Time off work. It’s meant to be a time of good cheer, relaxation and celebration. It is not too much to set aside the current situation just for a while.
It has been a difficult year. It is indeed a December to remember. Not only the dark sides of the situation but also the opportunities and bright sides. A new year has yet to come and who knows, by then, everything will be back to what it is.
Merry Christmas! From all of us here at Latestbuy to your house. Thank you for another year of allowing us to be with you on every occasion of your lives. We wish all the peace, safety and prosperity to you and to your loved ones!