Here we are, well into summertime, for my first blog entry in 2020. Do people still read blogs these days? I know I haven’t in a long time, but since my last life update was over a year ago, I thought I’d give this a shot. I’ve been meaning to get back on here anyway, so now seems to be a swell time to do so. Will it be deemed inappropriate if I still wish you all a happy new year with everything that’s happened between then and now?
Genuine question: how are you all doing? How are you coping with life amidst this global pandemic?
As with most of the rest of the world, our otherwise mundane lives took a weird turn when a state-wide stay-at-home mandate was rolled out in March due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Even before then, I had been one of the first employees to work from home since a colleague had just come back from Italy at the time, and everyone who may have had contact with him (even remotely) were advised to self-isolate as a precautionary measure. What we initially thought as a short-term shift turned out to be an indefinite attempt to slow the spread of the coronavirus.
While I’m not exactly new to the whole remote work scheme, Roan is, and establishing a new daily routine for both of us wasn’t an easy feat. It took us weeks to find our rhythm (or some semblance to it), but it’s nowhere near perfect. We’ve learned to be creative and resourceful about our “remote office” situation because we do what we can with what we’ve got.
After four months of working from home full-time, our team began reporting back on-site on a rotational schedule under strict safety protocols, following the CDC guidelines. We were divided into three groups, where each group will report in office for a week, and then work remotely the next two weeks before coming back again. Not going to lie—it’s been quite an adjustment with the new normal, and I personally still don’t understand the rush for bringing people back in while the rest of the world attempts to flatten the curve. Roan’s employer, on the other hand, has no plans of summoning their employees back on-site anytime soon (lucky!).
Most of Roan’s family members are healthcare workers, making them in the thick of the battle, but they’re fine, and we’re grateful for what they do as front-liners caring for sick people during this COVID-19 crisis. My family in Manila also hunkered down at home around the same time we did, and my Dad and brother were able to still work from home under current circumstances. The youngest (an airline cabin crew), however, was forced to stay home for a while due to travel restrictions. They were doing fine until my brother, who works at a manufacturing site, contracted the virus. My mother didn’t tell me about it until my brother’s 2-week quarantine period was over, which was kind of upsetting, but it could have been worse. He had what seemed like typical flu symptoms—sneezing, a sore throat, and then high-grade fever that won’t let up. When my brother has recovered from self-isolation at home, they all went to get tested again (just to err on the side of caution), and I’m relieved to know (and report) that my entire family is officially out of the woods.
Anyway, I hope you (and your loved ones) are well, wherever you are in the world… Please stay safe and healthy, and wear a damn mask.😷✌🏼