My name is Andrew. We have not physically met but I’ve heard so much about you. Your celebrity status has risen faster than any other “natural disaster”.
After about 2 years of branching out on my own I had finally made some real headway in my entrepreneurial journey. I had been growing my team and creating jobs, training interns, and hiring single parents. I had 2 side gigs that earned me extra income that offset my expenses and loan repayments. I had been asked to venture into China to open whisky and cocktail bars and provide training for locals. With China, Vietnam and Laos followed and contact made in January. I had lost all of that even with a good hand dealt to me. It’s been several months now and my business account is down to double-digit figures as I continue to pay staff. I refuse to let them go. As a director in my own company, I fall within the cracks of government support programmes and I worry every day about paying and looking after my staff. I have since moved many aspects of my business online and constantly adapting to the changing government restrictions.
I hated being so reactive to governing rules and the uncertainty you brought, COVID-19. I decided to focus more of my time and energy in areas I had more control of; where I could still be useful. I am involved in various mentorship programmes and am proud of my mentees who are mostly undergrads. The work they are doing for the youth and the community at large is admirable. Alongside my past colleagues of SIA’s cabin crew and current, we built an online community to support each other with content, social and professional development activities like whisky tasting classes and charity drives for migrant workers and the likes during this time.
The Dip Before the Climb
I must admit, COVID-19, you did get into my head. There were many times I felt frustrated, anxious and worried about many things which adversely influenced my outlook of life in general. I have learnt that this is normal and not uncommon. I stooped to a 2-week low before climbing out of negative thoughts and self-doubt. Though I’ve since been keeping busy with community work, I have taken some time for self-care.
COVID-19, I believe you came and did exactly what you were meant to. For this I am a little jealous that your purpose here on earth is a lot clearer than mine. Nevertheless, thank you for showing us where we stand as humans and as keepers of the natural world. We have much to learn and much to work on. Most importantly, thank you for the ones close to me and for helping me make time for the little joys of everyday life. Sláinte!