Dear Survivor: When Real Life Imitates Movies

Dear Survivor,

With the hundreds of movies you've watched that imitated life, who would have thought that you'll see the day when real life imitates movies. You thought the fear built up in every scene of a suspense or horror movie was the most gripping. That was before Facebook became an obituary of sorts and chat groups became sources of warnings for the spreading virus.

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Nothing spreads like fear, so goes the by-line of a movie. Fear is exciting in movies but not in real life. It is crippling, even damning. You feel it creeping on you and you can't help it. Unlike movies, no one gets to shout "Cut!" while you contemplate the possibility of "The End" of life as we know it.

You were a College Freshman when the first lockdown was announced. At first, it wasn't a big deal. It was just temporary anyway. You'll be back in school, your dorm, and your friends in no time. And so you thought ...

Days turned into weeks, weeks to months, and now it's months to years. Many people tend to dismiss your fears as the least of concerns. Many others are losing their jobs, even their lives. It isn't as if your frustrations can kill you.

You're still studying, right? You eat on time? You're safe with your family? They don't understand. You need to go out into the world. That was the plan. You're young. You are supposed to be chasing your dreams, not cloistered at home and just dreaming about what could be.

Background Photo by Markus Spiske from Pexels

It's quite frustrating not to be able to be where the action is. Your dream to be a provider of news is calling you to where the risks are, but safety dictates otherwise. You were already starting to live the dream as the news editor of your school paper before the brutal interruption.  To a young spirit like you,  this pandemic feels like the final nail in the coffin of your dream.

The future which used to be so exciting and promising is now covered in gloom. You are almost afraid to plan so far ahead lest it leads to more frustration. It took one serious realization to pull you out from the depths of inaction.

You remembered your passion. No one took it from you. You still have the power to make it happen and so you did.

There are a lot of newbie writers just seeking guidance and you gave them that. Opportunities to improve your craft abound online and you found what worked for you and used them. The time that was being thrown away with your frustration is now put to good use in helping yourself and others. 

You became more understanding of the fear felt by your loved ones which you initially thought was meant to restrict you. They want you to accomplish your dreams but you have to be safe and alive for that to happen. Finally, you understood that you do not let the situation decide for you because you decide for yourself. This pandemic will not define what you can do.

Just like the movies you love to watch where the protagonists go through a lot of ups and downs before triumphing at the end, you went through yours and survived. You know like the movie sequels you anticipate so much that there will be more complicated challenges to face, but you are now more prepared to face them. Knowing how fond you are of prequels, I wouldn't doubt that you might be tempted to change some things from the beginning but you know better. Life is made up of right and wrong decisions.

When you look back to this moment of survival many years from now, this particular survival may appear trivial compared to earth-shattering matters that come with more responsibilities. Remember though how it prepared and molded you. Today simply prepared you for tomorrow. 

Congratulations on surviving this phase of your life. This is just one of the many.

- Self

This story is an entry to ComCo Southeast Asia’s “Write to Ignite Blogging Project Season 2: Dear Survivor”. The initiative continues to respond to the need of our times, as every story comes a long way during this period of crisis.  The initiative aims to pull and collate powerful stories from the Philippine blogging communities to inspire the nation to rise and move forward amidst the difficult situation. The “Write to Ignite Blogging Project” Season 2 is made possible by ComCo Southeast Asia, with Eastern Communications and Jobstreet as co-presenters, with AirAsia and Xiaomi as major sponsors, and with Teleperformance as sponsor.

1 comment:

  1. Indeed, this is just one phase of one's life. And it will really depend on how you act on it. How great it is to be young like you 😊 God bless you, Pio!