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First World Problems during a pandemic

By Refilwe Mangweta, Digital Campaign Manager at The MediaShop

In a time when the whole world has been rocked by the tumultuous impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, the human condition shows how resilient it is in response to fighting this virus. Through these trying times I have learnt the importance of laughing at ourselves a bit. “A good laugh overcomes more difficulties and dissipates more dark clouds than any other one thing.”

Laura Ingalls Wilder. For this blog, I wanted to share my pandemic woes on a much lighter note.

Like most people, when the lockdown initially began and upon seeing how the virus was going to change the world as we currently know it, I thought to myself “Ok I’ve got this! I can do my part to flatten the curve!” Dare I say, I even circulated a couple of quotes like ‘our grandparents were called to fight wars, and all we were asked to do is to stay home’.

So needless to say I was ready to stay home and saw this as an opportunity to also accomplish some of the things on my to-do list – procrastination is a real thing! What I was not prepared for is how much of a boujee person I had become which, in turn, made the task at hand uhm ‘superficially challenging’ or at the very least, interesting. Particularly in terms of things I had deemed as “essential” which were honestly just first world problems for instance…

– Store-Bought Coffee – Yep, nothing completes an Instagram picture like a cup of coffee from your favourite coffee shop. So to not have this available was shattering as a coffee lover. The lack of caffeine came a close second to the no alcohol (let’s not even go there).

– Yeast and Ginger – Oh how these previously disregarded items have become the most desired. But the struggle to find these became like the Pokémon challenge version 2.0. Who would have thought that in 2020 we’d be panic buying yeast? Today, yeast has also been promoted from being “just another baking item” to now being critical ingredient to brewing your own alcoholic beverage.

– Make-up – Firstly eyelashes (whether they happen to be your own or not) were definitely essential. And the amount of friends who are having to tame and shape their own eyebrows has made us appreciate all the photo filters on Instagram even more. Any time I needed to go out I would apply my favourite lipstick only to realize no one and I mean NO ONE would see my M·A·C Retro Matte Lipstick.

Then there are those beautiful experiences we all thought we would have now that our fast paced lives have slowed down.

– The Zen, that just never came – The number of meditation apps on my phone and the neatly folded unused yoga mat are the perfect examples. Maybe I’ll give it a go tomorrow. Or maybe not. We’ll see.

– The TBR (to be read) pile still sitting on my bookshelf – Listen! As an avid reader this is painful, this was supposed to be my moment to shine. I mean while the world was panic buying toilet paper (before they moved on to the yeast) I stocked up on my fave reads getting myself ready to stay at home, and lose myself into stories and live vicariously through people sitting having drinks at restaurants . Sigh.

– Skin Regiments: My skin regiment has been affected because I used to wear a day cream in the morning then a night cream after my evening shower. But now I shower once a day because I wake up and jump onto meetings *don’t think we haven’t noticed these super early meetings added onto our calendars nowadays*, do work and schooling. So I only shower late afternoon and I can’t put on my night cream in the afternoon. Now I’m stressed because this beauty company promised me the night cream would rejuvenate my skin at night. So when do I use my night cream??? But like I said first world problems.

Thank goodness we’ve moved into level three which will remedy some of my first world problems :). I hope we can continue to laugh at ourselves a little as this virus seems like it will be a part of our lives for some time to come until we find a vaccine.

We need to come to terms with this and take the required precautions. We need to continue to show ourselves and those around us some love because this is difficult for everyone. But most importantly, find moments in each day of this new normal to have a good laugh. And where possible, share that laugh with someone else.

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