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Indra Gen

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Dear Covid, When I first heard of you, I wasn't sure how to react. Were you a 2nd, more deadly version of SARS? When SARS first came to Singapore, i was a 14-year old student, excited at having more school holidays whenever we could. However, as time passed, all of us realised that you were more serious and more deadly - you affected schools, families, businesses, the economy, and you pushed us all into our homes into a lockdown that we have termed a Cicuit Breaker. At first, I was not used to what Working from Home meant. I detested the idea of being at home all the time. However, over time, i found that I have grown used to it. More time for relaxing, a more balanced lifestyle, proper mealtimes, an average of about 6 hours of sleep every night. More communication through online platforms like Whatsapp and Zoom Calls. All these have been made possible through the magic of technology. I have come to relish my own personal space and my ability to venture out to exercise, while staying home to do the work that I do, at a pace that I am comfortable with. While Covid, you have definitely caused a major disruption in our lives, you have taught us the meaning of community. To look out for each other beyond that of our families, to put the needs of society above our own. Putting on masks, taking temperatures wherever we go, and 'checking-in' and 'checking-out' for contact tracing - all these are just a few (possibly permanent) changes that we have to adopt. While I thank you for teaching us how to take health precautions more seriously, I wonder, what else are you capable of doing? You have made nature regain its beauty, removed humans from the one thing we are good at - shopping, and brought everyone closer through staying at home and communicating online. Whatever it is, Covid, I am grateful for you, that you have showed us what truly matters in life. To the businesses that have been put away because of you, I pray that they are able to stand back up stronger than before. To the families that have been unable to see each other, may we appreciate each other's presence when social visiting is permitted. May we come to realise that the true meaning of life, is not dependent on what we have, but on who we have, in moments when life seems almost impossible to bear. Thank you Covid, may you grace us with your departure as soon as you see that you have overstayed your welcome, and changed our lives all permanently. May your lessons stay in our hearts, change our priorities, and never have to serve as a reminder again.