As Time Stood Still
“The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall”. –Nelson Mandela.
Nature has a funny way to hit the reset button.
It has been a difficult 2020 so far. Turkey entering into war with Syria, watching human beings self-destruct over and over again, and thousands of refugees yet again pleading for a safer life, one that no one is willing to extend. We are cruel, the cruelest of all animals. And then comes the environment sounding the alarm, over and over again, one that nobody hears.
Finally there’s a virus that has taken the lives of thousands of people in China, but why should we worry, it’s far away from us. The information may have come late, but it came. And even though we knew that so many lives would be lost, we thought we would not be affected, we are better, we are wiser. But it’s here and it is ravaging country after country. It has shut down the world. Is nature telling us something? Or is it time to slow down and rethink our policies, our relationships and our values. If nature is not hitting the reset button, we should.
I am a photographer and belong to a list of “high risk” individuals. I self isolated six weeks ago (March 8, 2020), understanding the threat and severity that the virus could have on my health. It’s the first time in my life that I feel so scared, so vulnerable, so helpless.
We are still in the early days and we have seen nothing yet. But what I see from my window, from social media and from the news, is a world that has stood still. Suddenly everything has come to a complete halt and the waiting game has started. It’s like a war, when you hear that deafening silence and know that any second the bomb will hit the ground, and you don’t know who or where is next. It’s a time of fear, of mourning and of total desperation for many. How could we let this happen? I do not know. But what I do know is that this can become a time of reevaluation of our values, our relationships and of ourselves. It can be a time of creation and of innovation. It can be a renaissance, which the world and the environment need so badly. Our atmosphere has already changed, our waters have become cleaner and clearer, nature seems to be taking a deep breath. So should we!
During this time of confinement, everyday feels the same, I have lost count of days and often time. There is no value to time, other than to those who are fighting for their lives. I have no sense of urgency other than to keep track of the progression of the virus in our society and the countries around the world. It’s a situation where one can easily fall into a funk. Yet I try to keep a focus and examine my feelings that are forever changing and fluctuating. I try to address my fears, my insecurity, my sadness, my anger and my hopes, all through the camera that has been a faithful companion for the past ten years. The creation of these self-portraits has been a very therapeutic process throughout this difficult time for my family and the world in general.