There are always two sides to every story and one’s blessing can also be someone else’s burden. The same can be said about the lockdowns that governments around the world have imposed to curb the spread of the Coronavirus.

The COVID-19 pandemic enabled families to get to know each other since they spent a lot of time together. Some fathers were able to know that children were left-handed and that they struggled to use a fork since the parents left early for work and came back at night after the children had retired to bed. The guardians who spent time with the children advised the parents of the certain foods that their children preferred to eat. It was a turning point for many parents and they could have vowed to be available and attentive parents.

Spending time with family and loved ones enabled families to strengthen their relationships. This is because the family members managed to share a meal and watch the television together. The older siblings grew to tolerate their young siblings and in some families, the siblings came to play games that involved every family member. People began to distinguish needs from wants and it was helpful since some families began to cut down on spending expenses.

The mantra “there is nothing impossible under the sun”, became relevant and is still relevant during the COVID-19 pandemic. The salons were closed and although some women and men depended on their hairdressers or barbers for their hair maintenance, the lockdown introduced the clients to “Do It Yourself”. Now, a lot of people rarely visit the salons since becoming accustomed to plaiting or shaving off their hair.

To add on, some people also learnt something new and for some, it was a way of dealing with stress and anxiety. Stress which was brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. Some people learnt a new skill which includes knitting, painting and baking. In some cases, people began to practice Zumba or Yoga to stay fit and safeguard their mental health.

Parents were able to spend time with their children and assist them with their assignments or with their school work. The parents got to discover their children’s weaknesses and strengths and it helped them excel. However, in some cases, homeschooling strained the relationship between parents and children since the parents were not patient enough to assist their children. In some cases, the parents ended up beating up their children.

There are also negative effects of the lockdown. Sadly the victims of sexual gender-based violence (which include both men and women) were in the same place as their abusers. Before the global pandemic, the victims could spend time at work or with other people. Unfortunately, due to the lockdown, there is nowhere to go and in some cases, the victims have attempted to commit suicide, been depressed or stressed.

Visiting loved ones in the hospital or spending time with friends and family had become a common practice before the global pandemic.  Members of the family who were admitted to the hospital could no longer see their family members during the visiting hour and it could have caused a strain in the invalid or the convalescent health. Instead of travelling to different places to visit family and friends, people resorted to video calls or Zoom meetings. But it will never be the same as hugging or holding the hand of a  loved one.

A lot of programs had to be put on hold because of the lockdown. Some family members could not attend weddings or graduation ceremonies. On the other hand members of the community were unable to attend funerals and offer their condolences or support the bereaved family members. Artists and performers had to cancel live functions and resort to virtual performances, but this too would never be the same as live functions with a sitting audience.

Spending time together was a blessing in some families but it could have caused a strain in some relationships. Because some family members could have been overworking around the house with no one appreciating their efforts. Instead of enjoying the company of loved ones, in some homes family members suffered from burnout and they longed to get some rest since not everyone was doing their part.

Charles Darwin said, ” It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change”.Adapting to change might be difficult but this is what we need to survive during this difficult time.