Not all is lost amidst all the loss

By: Esther Chunga

Across the road is a school. Every morning as I drive into work I see and hear children playing loudly, their excitement held in their screeching voices. A greeting and welcoming in of a new day and the hope is palpable. It has since been dead quiet. No running children, no screaming voices and no joyous laughs. Just dead silence and I find myself longing for that noise and

missing something that I never realised held any value.


This time of COVID-19 has often been described as a time to face collective loss. The world is grieving. Mourning is all around us. The normalities of life that were guaranteed not too long ago now seem to be a thing of the past. Who knew that the world was so malleable?

We cannot deny the loss, but we also cannot deny that we are all part of the same thing, speaking in both collective and at times divergent narratives around fear, uncertainties and tangible anxiety. We are bound by something we are all experiencing at the same time. Perhaps that is part of what keeps the links between us alive when so much seems without life – like the quiet empty school building.


Though at times we may feel that we have lost the capacity for connection, and even the ability to hold on to ourselves; we also cannot deny that not all is lost. There are moments were there is real linking, holding, acknowledging and sharing.

Though our minds and thinking capacity may feel shaken, they are not dead and we certainly have been more awakened to how much we want life, freedom, choice, healing.

So what happens next? When the children return and with them the ringing of screaming voices and joyous laughs? What happens then? Will we stop to hear it, take it in and appreciate it or will we drive by as quickly as we can without taking notice? Let us not lose again what we wish for now. Let us not lose.




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Ububele Educational & Psychotherapy Trust

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South Africa

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