At the WCIA, we understand that the outbreak of COVID-19 has been difficult for so many people across the world. At the beginning of the pandemic, we reached out to people worldwide to share global perspectives on COVID-19, recognising the global nature of the issue, and some of the similarities and differences of experiences in different countries. We wanted to identify and share both the positive and negative stories emerging from the situation. Over a year on from the start of the pandemic, we’re reaching out again…
Originally from Madrid, Santi works in our WCIA Communications team. He has a background in Communications, Latin American Politics, and Spanish teaching. He reached out to Luis López, a Mexican national based in México DF and currently working within the fashion media sector.
Here’s his story:
Christmas 2019 was a normal one in México DF. When we entered 2020, life seemed to be smooth and carefree. Up until spring. By then rumors had spread on a massive lockdown that would bring us back to 2009 and the swine flue. We never imagined the current pandemic would last this long.
As a freelance fashion journalist, I saw the industry gradually closing down. Back then, I was at the critical point of deciding what steps to take towards my professional career. I had already decided to move from México DF to Barcelona where I previously lived back in 2015 while pursuing a master’s program. In my mind, 2020 would be a year dedicated to paperwork in embassies, ministries and secretariats of any sort to finally make it to Spain by the second half of the year. But the virus kept spreading and restrictions seemed to tighten by the minute. Something clicked.
“Home is an emotional state of mind shared with your tribe that helps you face any […] challenges”
For the first time I thought about my own plans and how they would fit into the current reality. What if things happen so that we reflect upon ourselves and the ones around us? After all, maybe it wouldn’t be such a good idea to move thousands of miles away from my roots and my family. I shifted into thinking regionally, so I changed my plans of moving out to Canada instead.
My parents are both health care workers and they showed me the importance of the community with their hard work during the Covid-19 pandemic that is far from being solved in México. It is because of them that I decided to stay in North America now that times are very uncertain. As a Latino, I value family above all. This year I have come to the conclusion that home is much more than a place to stay. Home is an emotional state of mind shared with your tribe that helps you face any type of challenges. These current times impose too a psychological toll that makes us wonder if life will ever go back to the way it used to be.
“The biggest lesson […] is the need for self-improvement”
However, staying home has also brought me much closer to my family and spared me the great economic and logistic effort of moving out from México DF. I am also perfecting my French and other knowledge needed for the fashion industry. But above all, it is a luxury to enjoy my family as never before. I believe that is something not everybody can afford to do. I really hope that the end of the pandemic will allow us to keep going with some of the plans we had already sketched. So, the biggest lesson I take from this situation is the need for self-improvement. Life is too short to not make the best out of it.