Throughout the Coronavirus pandemic, heroes and heroines have been sprouting up all over in the most unlikely places.
From essential services like tellers at grocery stores, firemen, medical staff and teachers to ordinary citizens enforcing the laws or keeping spirits up with musicians playing from rooftops and families spreading comedic You Tube videos, plenty new heroes have emerged from out of the darkness.
Whilst it can certainly be said that these people - excluding the citizens who take the law into their own hands and are sure to drive us berserk with their unwelcome intrusion - deserve medals, perhaps medals should be bestowed upon all of us?
I find it necessary to thank all the parents and caregivers who have continued to provide for their families, when earning a livelihood was a massive challenge. Coming up with ingenious ideas, making use of technology or sacrificing luxuries in order to put food on the table was never an easy task, but somehow we have made it.
As lockdown draws to a welcome end for majority of South Africans, and life begins to ascend from a slow-paced crawl to a wobbling walk, we have to give our gratitude to the educators who have persevered in educating children, not just for a salary, but to maintain a general standard of intellectual knowledge in all of the young generation. We can truly acknowledge these professionals as invaluable pillars of society.
To the doctors and medical personnel, who have risked their own lives to save the lives of those that have been grasped by the claws of this monstrous virus, we owe our thanks. Whilst the death toll may be great, the recovery rate is far greater and this we can duly credit to those who work in the hospital, as well as those who bring the hospital with them.
For the shops and their employees whom we may have overlooked, our eyes have been opened and we see you in a new light. A new-found admiration has emerged in our society for those who occupy under-appreciated jobs such as tellers, cleaners and technicians.
Then, our dear fellow South Africans, we cannot pass by without a word of thanks to those who abided by the laws that many felt took away our freedom. We have suffocated behind pretty pieces of patterned cloth for months on end. Those in glasses have lived behind a fog that completely counteracted the utilization of spectacles, but here we stand.
Families and friends have been divided, but you know how the saying goes - absence makes the heart grow fonder (and for many, we may have wished that those in our household were absent sometimes, especially after months of being cooped up together!) Now that the restrictions have lessened their reign on our lives and we are free to move around in a less confined manner, we are truly grateful for the beauty that nature provides us with. We are thankful for the air, as polluted as it may be, it will never be like the air in our closed off houses.
We are incredibly grateful that our eyes have been opened to see the world in a new way.
For Isabella, her love for birds is not just a passion, but a way of life. Born in 2004, she was raised alongside a beautiful flock of chickens as well as many other birds like cockatiels, budgies, quail and water fowl. She considers herself one of the flock and stands strongly against the cruel treatment towards broiler and battery hens. Isabella spends her time writing poetry and essays as well as hatching and raising many species of birds, including strays or injured wild birds. As an aspiring veterinarian, she hopes to make a difference in the lives of broiler chickens as well as the environment