Business Mentor: Will we still be singing Merry Christmas?

Armando Bartolome

Posted at Sep 05 2020 08:05 AM

Christmas decor go on sale in Quezon City amid the general community quarantine on September 1, 2020, the start of the 'ber' months or the longest Christmas season celebrated around the world. Sales of Christmas Decor is expected to be low due to the pandemic. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

When it was announced that there would be a need to keep ourselves safe at home, it didn’t sink in that the virus could be this devastating. Seeing the number of affected individuals steadily rise made me fearful not only for myself but more importantly for my family.

So many questions started to flood my mind to the point of almost losing hope particularly after seeing how many of our frontliners were getting infected and dying. But I said to myself, if I keep my mind in that state, nothing good will come out of it. Plus, it will just weaken the spirit of my family which I do not want to happen.

I prayed to strengthen myself. I needed to toughen up and show others that we can all get through this. And no matter how bad it may seem everything will be alright. Things may not be the same as they used to, but we can all get by, eventually.

I know how some people agonize with the fact that this disease still has no cure and that we have not developed any. And so, sometimes, in my most quiet moments, I get to think if Christmas will still be the same.

So many people have been out of jobs. Some have resorted to begging just so they could put food on the table for the family. It is truly hard to hang on tight when there seems to be no hope for getting your life back.

Not having a job or business can dampen anyone’s spirits which may even lead you to the breaking point.

Seeing the children who don’t understand the gravity of this whole thing, I am sure parents hope that somehow, they can still have a happy, normal life. That somehow they can still give something to their children on Christmas Day.

Usually, during this month, bazaars are popping almost everywhere. And it is the best time of the year to buy gifts because they are still cheap. For some sellers, it may be the start of their real business.

It’s kind of sad that we will not see crowds in these bazaars because we need to practice physical distancing. For sure, there would still be sellers, both online and offline. But shopping at physical stores is a different experience compared to just clicking on items online.

I feel that unless sellers would come up with really unique and outstanding products, people may just rely on the simplest gift that their money can afford. Food for noche buena? No matter how little will be served on the table, what’s important is that every family member is together to celebrate Christmas.

Filipinos are known to be “madiskarte”, and I am proud of this. Every Filipino, I think, is characteristically resilient, just like an entrepreneur. An ordinary Juan will do everything possible to make their families happy even in the direst of situations.

Some people think that we are happy-go-lucky. But that is just how Filipinos are. The majority of Filipinos live simple lives, wanting simple things.

Indeed, our celebration of the Christmas Season will change. Let’s all just think of these changes as something that can help us become stronger. We don’t have control of every situation, but we can do little things which can help us feel better.

Yes, there still will be Christmas despite everything that has happened since the start of 2020. We just need to put on a brave face, an accepting heart, and a will to move on and do as much as we can to make Christmas feel better even if we don’t have a lot of money.

The sound of Christmas carols, no matter how old you have become, still puts that sense of being a child. Christmas will always be in our hearts. No devastation can take that away from us because Christmas gives us a gleam of hope and spreads love among all of us always.

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