The first target of COVID-19 was Daegu, where I was born. My parents and I live in Daegu. Most of the spread was among certain religious groups, due to their worship services which were often conducted without face masks and social distancing. The spread broke in February 2020, when daily confirmed cases in Daegu increased to two thousand.
I witnessed how my whole country was in a great panic with the serious increase in Daegu and some people even argued to put our city on lockdown. I saw many stores put a sign saying anyone from Daegu cannot come in and it made me very worried when the news started to report saying ‘Daegu COVID.’ Even though the spread was initiated by a religious group, the entire citizens were considered to be a ‘COVID-19 spreader,’ our family included.
Somehow, we just focused and relied on other good news we saw on the TV. Hospitals were all in chaos at that time so medical support from various cities came to Daegu to help medical forces, and even take some patients to their city for treatment. The spread went on until April 2020. Many workers lost their jobs or got a non-paid vacation. My dad didn’t go to work for almost half of the month. It was a rough time for my parents and me, but since dad was staying home, we could have our own family time as much as we wanted. It was definitely a hard time, but my family learned to find peace in the chaotic situation.
COVID-19 is still a great challenge to many countries but for me, it brought motivation and inspiration to do better and to also reach out to others in need. I am a teacher and teaching motivates me to stay active. Seeing my students participate makes me happy. It is a big adjustment for students and even for me as a teacher but life goes on and we still need to keep going with our work, our passion, our dreams, and our life.
Despite all these things that happened, I’m grateful for what I have and what I have been blessed with. Everyone is having a hard time but I try to see the good things amidst this pandemic and still hope that things will be better soon. Until now, I never lost hope that my country, Korea, and all countries in the world will soon overcome and triumph above this devastating global pandemic. I know and believe that God is among us and He knows what is happening. If we all just put our trust in Him, I know He will bless us and strengthen us.