Kamala Harris Is Right, Family Zoom Calls Did Help Us Get Through Last Year

Kamala Harris zoom

US Vice-President-elect Kamala Harris shared a cute family chat video last night on Twitter. Featuring the Harris-Emhoff clan, the five-minute-long video gives us a peek into the soon-to-be second family of the United States. “There’s no way we could have gotten through this crazy year without you and doing these Zooms,” we hear Harris’ husband Doug Emhoff say. Adding, “We have said to each other, like everyone, we’re sad we can’t be with everyone in person, but then we say, but we’re so much closer with our entire family because of these Zooms.” Harris echoed her husband’s sentiment as her tweet read “We couldn’t have gotten through last year without our family Zooms.”

Harris’ aunt Dr Sarala Gopalan, sister Maya Harris and niece Meena Harris can also be spotted in the family Zoom call, which would remind you of the virtual gatherings you may have had in the year gone by. Now that one looks back, with high hopes of normality returning in a couple of months (hopefully) one wonders how we would have managed to cope with this pandemic if we couldn’t see our dear ones digitally? I spent close to ten months without meeting my parents. They went the same duration without meeting their beloved granddaughter. I have aunts and uncles who were stuck alone at home, with their kids living abroad, with no chance of coming home anytime soon, and cousins living alone in big cities, braving through lockdowns on their own.

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Now we hear that offices will soon reopen, kids are slowly being called back to school. Before I sat down to write this piece I read that the first batch of Covishield vaccine consignment has left Pune’s Serum Institute, for distribution. I am still holding my breath, refusing to let out a sigh of relief. The end to this pandemic seems to be close, but we know that it is far from over yet. However, one cannot help but feel amazed at human resilience. We got through this. Yes, we made mistakes, yes we could have been better prepared if we had paid heed to warnings. But we are here, looking at a brighter 2021. I for one feel that it was Zoom and WhatsApp video calls with our family that gave us the strength and patience to bid our time.

Just the fact that you can see your dear ones and the assurance that they are alright, kept a lot of anxious people from travelling back to check on their loved ones, something that wasn’t advised during the lockdown. The pandemic restrictions, that devoid us of social gatherings, in a way forced us to reconnect with long lost friends and cousins as we sought human interaction, and most of the times, it was pleasant to catch up.

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As privileged as it sounds, video calls, Zoom, Facebook, WhatsApp or any other kind, played a big part in making this pandemic endurable. And we should hold on to those video calls a little bit longer. Till everyone has access to the vaccine, till we can all switch off the phone and meet our loved ones face-to-face, sans the barriers of shields and masks.

Feature Image Credit: Iknowpolitics.org

The views expressed are the author’s own.