Counting my blessings

My lockdown experience was quite interesting. I was one of the many people locked-down alone for most of the isolation period, at least until travel between provinces was allowed. During the almost three-months, like many others, I developed new culinary skills that I hadn’t explored previously. And for the first time in a long time, I was conscious of the impact that technology has on my life as I often pondered how I would have survived the lockdown without it.

Technology afforded me the opportunity to communicate with family and close friends as well as maintain some sort of social life. It also helped immensely when two of my family members succumbed to COVID-19 and we had to plan the funerals virtually. This helped me to deal with what was going on whilst also being cognizant of the fact that I wouldn’t be able to physically attend the funerals.

Even with the circumstances, this brought us closer as a family as we did what we needed to do with what we had at our disposal knowing that the people that we love will be buried in a way in which they themselves would never have imagined…in isolation. The grieving process which, in the African culture, means that neighbours and friends come and show support physically, emotionally and by just being available – was not available at this time. The idea of asking people not to enter a home where a COVID-related death had occurred just felt un-African but it had to be done – so sharing these experiences with family helped me to reconcile with what had transpired and helped us to try to move on as best we could.

My birthday also took place during the heart of the lockdown and for the first time in my life, I would be alone. However, so many special people in my life made sure I still felt the love from various corners of the globe, literally! Netflorist was very busy that day... and it all made me appreciate the blessings that are the people in my life. How people went out of their way to make sure I got an extraordinary and special birthday actually made it one of the most memorable birthdays ever.

These are just some of the examples of how I had to make the conscious decision to count my blessings during lockdown, and how work was a great distraction for me too. My colleagues and the innumerable Teams calls (as many as they were) helped to maintain some sort of contact with what I knew to be normality.

All in all, it was a challenging time, but I also challenged myself to be better and do better not only to and for myself but in every single area of my life.

Mandumo Mguli

With extensive experience in Business Development and Market Access within the In-Vitro Diagnostics industry, Mandu's distinct eye for opportunities and their successful completion set's her apart and are yardsticks for the success of the projects she embarks on. She is always striving to be better and do better in every sphere of operation. Driven by an insatiable passion and commitment to access to healthcare and international development, Madumo's passion is palpable and evident in all the spaces she operates in.