Share

Your

#dearcovid19sg

stories

NKC

student

It is with a steadfast resolve as we take on the second half of this year. Tiding through the Covid-19 pandemic is no easy feat, but we march on relentlessly, in reassuring solidarity. I share my piece, as a youth, once carefree but now thrust into an unencountered, unprecedented crisis. In the early months of 2020 when the virus had emerged and surfaced in news reports, there were bouts of panic buying, aggressive testing and -for the student population- a paradigm shift in the delivery of teaching. Having never encountered any sort of national emergency before, I merely viewed this as a passing issue and more of a disruption to my face to face classes. I carried on, mask-free. Then on March 21st, the World Health Organisation (WHO) left a message for the young people that shook me to the core, nipping my nonchalant attitude towards the pandemic right in the bud. “You are not invincible.” Hearing these 4 words, I suddenly felt vulnerable. The message shone the light on the immature thoughts that I had harbored such as ‘Young people are strong’ and ‘Even if we do contract the virus, our immune system can overcome it.’ Furthermore, the ramifications of my laid back attitude could have unknowingly implicated individuals more at risk. But this is not a piece on condemnation or regret. It is an account on what was occurring around the world, through the eyes of a 21 year old during this period, and just one of the many stories that will be told when we recall 2020. Covid-19 brought pain and suffering, it caused major disruptions and inconvenience, but it did not defeat us. Under the leadership of a supportive government, everyone found their own way of adapting to the new norm. And the unlikely youths, once branded as the snowflake generation, have actually displayed resilience and creativity in overcoming these turbulent times. We exercised alongside workout videos, displayed our cooking prowess, and might have even learnt a new skill through massive open online courses. The horror that usurped the world and sought to divide us failed as we nurtured our bonds through regular Zoom video calls and gracious food deliveries to friends and families. Some have even gone a step further and volunteered in charities such as the Food Bank to collect and donate food to the needy. The transition to a digitalized lifestyle has been smooth for young people who are the most receptive to technology. And in this technologically driven landscape, some of us have become the teachers. Or in my case, a personal technical support, as I navigate my mother through the various technical issues she encounters. Being relied upon shows that the youths are not powerless in this crisis. We can be as much of a positive influence with the right tools and platform, and are not to be underestimated due to our age. As we approach the month of July, which is also the Youth month, let us celebrate our growth. For we will all emerge from this pandemic a different person, whether physically, mentally or emotionally.