Uncertainty and Hope COVID-19


Coronavirus has transformed all our lives. In such short time, our routine has been disrupted, and familiarity shifted. Our movement restricted.

I am documenting the local scene while physically distancing myself through my lens. ‘Uncertainty and Hope’ photo essay is a work in progress. Perhaps when we overcome this pandemic, hopefully soon, these captures will be displayed physically. In the meantime, we get to reflect on facing this stillness.

The paradox of public health can be ironic. When system and procedures are put in place and done right, nothing happens. There can’t be a public celebration when there is no coronavirus case or death doesn’t happen.

Our very existence has been challenged, not by a devastating nuclear war, not by a catastrophic asteroid impact nor a calamitous worldwide drought, but suddenly we face a life-threatening virus. And it is not even a living organism! Confirmed infection cases increased by many folds, and the mortality rate rises every single day.

Essentially Gone

Our fear and uncertainties came all at once. Breaking news and blaring broadcast fed our weaken insecurity. Out of fear and doubt, we shared and spread our emotions to balance out the burden we shoulder. Our conscious mind starts to propel us in a loop of confusion to seek more clarity. The only constant was an evolving change—the information on Coronavirus and how the disease spread was a moving target. Our vulnerability continues to perpetuate. We noticed ourselves reacting more frequently instead of responding. We protest the most trivial matters, and we catch ourselves getting angry more so than other times. Our uncertainty drove us to stockpile food, supplies, and, in most cases seizing them in unnecessary quantity. We operate in the pit of the conscious mind because we continue to live in the past. The shelter-in-place and restricted movement arrest our better-thinking faculties. We blame others and become judgmental. What thrown upon us is not familiar. We have never been here before, at least during my sojourn on this planet.

After the phase of reactions, we adapt to the new normalcy and yield to realize what we can and can't have under the will of our dominion. We start to seek and do what we can. Compulsive and panic consumption takes a gradual downturn. News and views we forward without even previously reading gets more scrutiny. Carefully, we only share what is accurate, kind, necessary, and helpful. We become keen observers of our sentiments. Our emotions and feelings reflect our maturity, not because of our age but of our understanding. The overused bandwidth hindering our internet use does not upset us as much any longer. We turned our attention to family time, connecting with friends and acquaintances. We explore productive avenues. From the fear of the unknown, we dawn into the light of awareness. We now know everyone else is going through similar challenges, and like them, we are also trying our utmost to stay resolute.

As we transcend the feeble areas of our mind, we gain a new appreciation of life in itself. We offer thankfulness spontaneously and frequently. We express gratitude to our loved ones and to those who served others during this crisis. We see beyond the restrain they initially put on us. We understand the sacrifices others make for the betterment of all. We now explore beyond the help we seek and try to be of relief to others. Our innate creativity and expertise get channeled for the better to assist others. Our efforts motivate others, and the snowball effect transforms to become noble causes. We are no longer stuck in the mud. Like the lotus bud, we seek light out of the murky waters. Our outlook on life is more decisive, but we know how to be safe and vigilant to combat this intrusive virus. Fear and worry are just states of the mind our awareness flows through at any particular moment in time. They don't define us. Our sounder emotional disposition emanates optimism to our family and friends. Shelter-in Place, solitude and seclusion has given us more than what we really can comprehend. Each one of us can attest to what we uncovered in our quietude.

Honoring in Silence
Welcome, our windows open
Improvising around the existing signage
Giddy up catering
Ace. One.
Mask man coffee break
Singing the shelter-in blues
Caffeine or Life
No coming. No going.
The irony of emptiness in town is depicted here. Most businesses are shut. The theater billboard showcases these last movie titles. Each one has a message. Not many people on the streets: ‘Invisible Man.’ ‘Thread’ is what we are walking on today! ‘Onward’ and ‘I still believe’ is all we have and got to go forward.
Back door pickup
Gased up but no where to go
No provisions
No way
Sweeping Change
Drive-by graduation gown pickup
We shall never forget


Created By
Raj Manickam