Glass Half Empty? I Don’t Think So.
Half full, then? I wouldn’t be entirely sure about that, either.
Some say that there are two kinds of people in this world: optimists and pessimists. Others counter that no single one of them should be followed ceaselessly, giving off the third branch, neutralism. I usually consider myself a neutralist, but I also feel that our outlook and perception of the world should be allowed to vary as per the situation.
And 2021 demands hopefulness.
The past year has been erratic, what with forest fires, locust attacks, and economic crises all over the world in 365 short days. However, the most brutal hit of 2020 was coronavirus. It sent the world into a tailspin and showed us just how fickle our existence can be. For some time, the remote control of the planet hit the pause button and everything stopped. Social media became the new platform of human existence. International students were stranded between countries that didn’t want them and countries that could not take them in. Fear turned into terror, which waxed to desperation, whose coin was flipped and transformed into fatigue, till it reached a point where no more could be taken and set carelessness afoot.
Now, the newspapers are overflowing with word of vaccines. The pessimists out there say that there’s nothing certain about this. The vaccinations may be effective, but they may not be, either. Maybe the virus mutates beyond control of the prepared vaccine. Perhaps most people can’t get it done at all.
I won’t discount any of these possibilities, but I think it’s important for us to remember that such a pandemic isn’t unheard of. The influenza, smallpox and plague outbreaks over the years have been disastrous too, but humanity survived. They made it. If humans could get through then, why can’t they do so now, too? Especially considering the level of technological advancement the 21st century has introduced, if anyone can curb a disease, it’s us. The world’s been through pandemics, world wars, civil retaliation, and thousands of natural disasters. All we’ve yet to face is an alien invasion (and those are being predicted, too). It’ll take more than a bat in someone’s soup to get rid of us.
Humans have adapted to this planet in ways no other species has. We have evolved, and so has the world. Unexpected incidents trigger unexpected reactions, but we’ve readied ourselves for almost anything life has to throw at us. When a meteorite took out the dinosaurs, we found a way to grope our way back onto Earth, albeit in the form of apes. When the ice age turned the planet into an icicle, we pulled through. When we turned against each other and sent our own homes up in flames, we managed not to go extinct. Yes, we suffered. We were agonised. We lost. But in a way, we won, too. We endured. If we did it before, we can do it again. A positive mind leads to positive outcomes, because if you think you can do it, you can. You may not get it all, but you will get some, and though anything’s possible, it’s safe to assume that this won’t be the end of the world.
So stop shivering at the thought that 2020 won and embrace the possibility of 2021, because we can make it happen.