The truth is, COVID-19 is far from gone.
It has been about two weeks since the government announced that Singapore would be moving into Phase 2 of the circuit breaker.
The news came as a surprise as I expected Phase 1 to last at least a month, but it was comforting to know that Singapore was progressing and life could somewhat return back to normal.
Like many youths, I was bored at home and was eagerly anticipating the day I could have a meal with my friends. Despite this, here is why I have not gone out to socialise since the beginning of Phase 2.
There's no need to rush out of the house.
PHOTO CREDIT: MARKUS WINKLER ON UNSPLASH
The sad reality is, COVID-19 is nowhere near gone, and going out would put myself and my family at risk. Just the thought of infecting my loved ones and causing them to put their lives on hold was enough to stop me from going out.
Do not get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with catching up with your friends over a meal in Phase 2.
It is completely understandable that after months of being stuck at home, all you would want to do is go out and have a good time. However, the problem arises when people go out excessively and do not practise responsible behaviour.
Even if we do practise social distancing, handwashing and wearing a mask, it can sometimes be difficult to keep ourselves completely safe.
Just the other day when buying groceries, I subconsciously touched my face. I am aware that I should not be doing so, but I sometimes get distracted and it slips my mind. Fact is, no matter how much we try to keep ourselves safe, we are never really 100 per cent protected from the virus.
I have friends who have asked me out since Phase 2. But I would tell them I'm not completely comfortable with going out, and would rather stay home. Thankfully, most of them have been quite understanding and do not have issues with my stance.
Crowds started appearing again during Phase 2 at popular places like bubble tea outlets.
PHOTO CREDIT: YOUTH.SG/SHERLYN TAN
To add, community cases have been rising over the last few days. Experts have stated that if this trend continues, we may need to reintroduce some of the circuit breaker measures. This is a real concern - just take a look at what happened in South Korea.
Personally, staying at home feels like a social responsibility to me. We all play a part in keeping the country safe, and the last thing anyone wants is going through another round of the circuit breaker.
I am fortunate because being at home is not the worst thing for me. I am aware that many people do not have the same luxury. For some, staying home can be a stressful and difficult experience.
However, if being home is a viable option, I would encourage you to do so. Even inviting a small group of friends over, instead of going out for a meal, is safer.
While authorities may have given us the green light for life to return to (the new) normal, take a moment to look at the bigger picture and ask yourself how you can keep your community safe.
I spent some time reflecting on this and the answer was simple: thinking twice before going out unnecessarily.
BANNER AND TEASE PHOTO CREDIT: UNITED NATIONS COVID-19 RESPONSE ON UNSPLASH
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