It has been nearly 2 years since the WHO declared the Covid-19 global pandemic. We have experienced mandatory ‘social distancing’ for the first time and spent much more time than ever before staying at home. Therefore, almost everyone couldn’t enjoy a normal life and some people have suffered from a disorder called ‘Corona Blue’ because the lack of communication has lasted such a long time. You might feel bad that the world has turned cold. But I want to announce that the warm moments have always happened to us even in such a hard time. Let me introduce five such cases that occurred in 2021.
Process Rather Than Result
Extraordinarily, especially during the 2021 Tokyo Olympics, there were many South Korean players who were ranked in 4th place . The players who are on the top three could receives medal and many people have paid attention only to them. It was a social reality that the players out of the top three couldn’t have been recognized. Even though, unfortunately, the 4th ranked players could not receive a medal they showed their pride in their efforts rather than their disappointments with the results. Unlike in the past, culture is changing to encourage all players who did their best without regrets and to focus on the process rather than the result. Such a social flow influenced many people in a positive way.
The Bread Daddy
There is a special bakery in Namhae, Gyeongsangnam-do. At the bakery, elementary students who go to school can get some bread every morning. Kim Ssang-sik, CEO of ‘Happy Bakery’, has given bread to children for free every day for about a year and three months. Also, he serves bread to institutions for disabled people in Nam-hae and 12 self-sufficiency centers. In July 2021, LG welfare foundation which was impressed by his contribution to society awarded him a prize called ‘Upright person prize of LG’, as he made an exemplary effort for others. But “I just gave children some bread, it is not a big deal. I did not know that I would get this amazing prize.” Mr. Kim said humbly. Kim puts about 70 to 100 pieces of bread out for children who go to school to get one at 7:40 every morning. In front of his bakery, there is such a phrase written. ‘Do not miss a breakfast!! Eat it on your way to school. It is hard to study and also hard to play if you skip your meal~~!’
He said he had suffered from poverty when he was a child, and it is why he does volunteer work for children. He hopes that no child starves. He left a message that he would make more delicious bread in return for the prize.
An Angel Nurse and an Old Lady Under Quarantine, There Were ‘Flower Cards’ Between Them
In the summer of 2021, a photo was posted on Twitter which titled “Medical staff played hwatu with the old woman who was quarantined at hospital. She showed her efforts and cared for a lonely old woman. It was spread in a trice. The old lady in the picture is a 93-year-old with dementia. She was diagnosed with COVID-19 last year and has stayed at hospital over a year. This picture has a story. She was bored and got lonely because of her long hospital life. The medical staff was concerned about her because she is a dementia patient, so the staff played a picture matching game with her using hwatu, one of the ways to treat dementia. It must have been so painful and hot with thick hazmat suits because it was summer at that time. That picture made many people deeply moved by that the staff who spent her time for her.
The word ‘talismanic’ usually represents the most crucial player in a sports game. No one can dispute the claim the most followed sport at the Tokyo Olympics held in August was women’s volleyball. Likewise, the popularity of Korean women’s volleyball boomed compared to before the Olympics. Without a doubt, Kim Yeon-koung is the best player who contributed to its popularity. Her outstanding skills were amazing, but her leadership was issued over the world. She was the captain of the women's volleyball team at the Tokyo Olympics. She united the team with her great charisma, she offered some words of comfort and support co-players in the middle of the games, and the scenes were caught on camera. Those moments explain that she always took care of all players as the captain. When the opposing team got their match points, most players seemed discouraged, but she boosted her team, saying “Do not give it up until the end”. Then, they scored four points continuously and finally won the game. It was like a scene of a drama. Also, this Olympics was her last Olympics as a player. Therefore, her passion was greater than anyone else and it affected other players. The Korean women’s volleyball team brought it to the successful conclusion with the highest score in the history of women's volleyball.
Miracle With a Survival Rate of 1%
In April 2021, a small baby weighing 288 grams and 23.5 centimeters long came into the world. This baby was a premature baby who was born after only 24 weeks and six days of gestation, and he was recorded as the smallest baby in Korea. He was too small when born to be only a tenth of that of ordinary newborns, so the probability of survival was only 1%. Surprisingly, however, he was discharged from hospital after his intensive care successfully concluded in September 2021. The miracle of 1% actually happened. In general, ‘1%’ is considered that there is no hope at all. But his parents devised a method to save their baby and put up with any risk. They had to travel about 10 hours a week to deliver breast milk to their baby and pump in the car. But they said that they weren’t even exhausted. Parents’ strong desire reached their baby, he could breathe by himself after 80 days with a respirator. He got better and better, then he finally left the hospital five months after his birth.
Although the social mood seems to be cold due to COVID-19, the world steadily shows us warmth. Miracles happen and happiness always blooms somewhere. Also, you must have had similar moments in 2021. You should cherish them. Even though we live a little stuffy life in hopes for a better future, I wish all of you not to lose hopes in your life. While seized with fear at the first time, people are adapting well now and they do their best to overcome this situation in their own positions. We would regain our peaceful daily lives someday.
The common denominator of the five stories that were introduced above is ‘positiveness’. The power of the affirmative is stronger than expected. It brings miracles, makes a beautiful ending, and forms a bond with others. Also, it rewards for the troubles and spreads positive influence on many people. Reflect on your 2021 and remember the valuable memories. Let’s run hard and enjoy our 2022 with a positive mind.
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