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Schools shut. Offices locked. Shopping malls and salons sealed. Flights cancelled. Parks and roads deserted. Restaurants empty.

All plans halted.

External exams cancelled. Senior school students weighing different options. All of them risky and uncertain. Neither guaranteeing the outcome one had hoped for. Loss of a precious year of life seeming like the worst outcome ever…

Justified.

But let’s try to look at things from another angle. Let’s ask ourselves.

When was the last time our children learnt the self discipline of home learning & adapted to change so well?

When was the last time fathers put their kids to bed for so many days at a stretch?

When was the last time families had 3 meals a day, at home, together?

When was the last time grandchildren cared for grandparents so much, so sincerely?

When was the last time our children prayed for the whole world & all the people in it, alike?

When was the last time we all took so much interest in home chores and actually enjoyed it?

When was the last time we realised how much we plan, and exactly how little is in our control?

When was the last time everyone in the family made sure not a single grain of food was wasted?

When was the last time we consciously brought in an exercise routine in our daily family schedule?

When was the last time our children took cancelling a holiday plan so well?

When was the last time we found hidden treasures while spring cleaning & spent hours telling our children the stories of our childhood?

When was the last time we truly appreciated our doctors, nurses, and essential service providers?

When was the last time siblings played with each other for hours?

When was the last time we realised with such gravity how huge a blessing our health is?

When was the last time we realised how much we’ve let materialistic things overpower us?

When was the last time we willingly sent our house help on paid leave?

When was the last time we valued our jobs and pay cheques so much?

When was the last time our children did not order in for about a month?

When was the last time our children thought of those in need at every single meal time and at every single Rupee they spent?

When was the last time families offered namaz in Jamaats at home?

When was the last time our kids followed news so closely and understood what it actually means to be the occupants of ONE world?

When was the last time our children helped us so much around the house?

When was the last time we realised how much we take for granted?

When was the last time husbands/ men of the house willingly experimented in the kitchen?

When was the last time Mother Earth breathed and looked this clean?

When was the last time we didn’t need to get the car tank refilled for more than 3 weeks?

When was the last time we made peace with grey roots of our hair?

When was the last time we took up a forgotten hobby or picked up an unfinished book?

When was the last time we had so much time to TALK to each other?

When was the last time we caught up with friends and family living in all parts of the world?

When was the last time the alarm clock didn’t rule our lives, 5 days a week?

When was the last time Lahore had this blue a sky and this beautiful a moon?

When was the last time we all made sure our Zakat is distributed way before Ramzan?

When was the last time we thought of our safaid pash relatives?

When was the last time we realised we need SO little to live SO comfortably?

When was the last time any of us thought that this actually might be the beginning of the end?

When was the last time when a month made us reflect on our entire life span and our way of living?

When was the last time a prospect of a lost year taught us something all the other years we had lived earlier, couldn’t?

When was the last time we all felt this vulnerable and helpless?

This month of isolation has taught our children more than a lifetime of academics. This slow down has exposed them to more than any amount of travelling could.

It has revealed the bigger picture.

Let’s help them look at it.

Let’s help them remember it.

Let’s help them learn to always focus on it.

Let’s all pray that the biggest loss they ever have to bear, is a lost academic year…

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