Excerpt from Aug 12, 2020, Journal Entry

It rained that day, and the usual fogs of Baguio City covered the triage. The chill has penetrated us even with our PPE (personal protective equipment) coverings. We welcomed the cold from the usual hot environment. And despite the splashes of water, we continued with our duty.

I developed a sore throat and colds two days after that. And as per guidelines, I had my swab test done and was directed for home quarantine until the results came in. I was on home quarantine for six days and finally reported back after receiving my negative test results. 

The quarantine was a rollercoaster of emotion for me. First, I got paranoid. I worry about my son, who developed symptoms as well. And then, there was guilt. I know I have been lenient, not with my actions, but with my prayer life. I feel too tired and preoccupied with our current circumstances. And that I have no energy or inkling to enhance my relationship with God. It took being ill to get reminded again.

Then, I felt the strength to fight. Not confronting our illness, but the fighting spirit to push through beyond guilt. I do not know with you, but as for me, when I let go of the daily journey of a Spirit-led life, it becomes difficult to go back. It is like my body is no longer familiar with God’s presence. But I know this is what I needed, and I know that God is only waiting for me.

And finally, there was confidence. I am confident that God will never forsake His children. He teaches us and disciplines us, but He will never let go of us. 

Waiting for our swab result is not an easy feat. But God makes all our experiences worthwhile when we learn to trust fully in Him. And in those days of waiting, I enjoy what is most important. 

We hear more when we are quiet.

Here is an important lesson that I also learned during my quarantine.

As a triage nurse during this pandemic, I have been harassed, yelled at, and even cursed. These usually happen when important businesses and personal travels got denied at our level. It is not like we do not understand, but we know that sympathy should never blind us from doing our duty.

I once heard from a great speaker that people like Gandhi is not bothered by being poor, for their problems are much greater than themselves. And for this reason, they became the change that they meant to be.

Our team, when assigned at the triage has stepped up to the plate of the front-liner. We were idealistic and had a strong will to protect our city. But as the pandemic drags on, fatigued has caught upon us. Not only physically tired, but we got exhausted from being emotionally involved. We got tired of implementing policies that were created to protect individuals and families. But these same people we are trying to protect have turned against us like enemies. 

During these quiet moments of quarantine, I realized that Gandhi was an enemy to the rich and the wicked, but he was a ray of hope to the weak and the poor. A lesson we can learn from this is to avoid focusing our energy on the opposing forces. Instead, focus on people who need our care. This way, we protect ourselves too. 

I also realized that changing my focus will help more. By focusing on educating and assisting a few is better than educating hundreds who will not listen.

And most importantly, I learned to reconnect, not only with God but with the people I care about. We cannot bring praises, recognition, and money to heaven. But we can win souls by investing in our relationships here on Earth. 

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