Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan - Vancouver
Art by Emily Honderich
Elena Nikolaidi story
Elena Nikolaidi was born and raised in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan (Central Asia). In 2011 she arrived in Montreal, Canada as a skilled worker. She later moved to Vancouver, BC. Her passion for helping people brought her to work at a non-profit organization as a community worker. At this time, she works as a victim support worker helping immigrants, refugees, and visible minority women and children experiencing family violence.
My Dream Turned Out to Be A Nightmare
COVID-19 hit us unexpectedly. I never thought I had to prepare for such a crash event. Every single resident on the entire planet has been affected by this pandemic.
In the beginning, I was scared. My husband and I work with clients, and we could potentially get the virus and spread it to our family.
The government announced it was a pandemic, and quarantine became our reality. Schools had to close, and children had to stay home. My team from work decided to work remotely.
A dream turned out to be a nightmare. I realized that I am isolated. I have a job, and I am busy but isolated. My children are fighting during Zoom meetings. They are not happy that mommy locks the door to her bedroom. They are not happy being home anymore. My mother became irritated because she must manage the situation inside our small apartment, and I still have to work. I am overwhelmed with feelings of fear, terror, and panic. My optimism has disappeared.
In moments when fear escalates anyway, I force myself to return to the "here and now." No matter what happens in the hospitals, we are now at home, and at this moment, our situation isn't so bad. I follow all the safety regulations. I do my part, but I know none of us can control the overall situation.
"A dream turned out to be a nightmare. I realized that I am isolated. I have a job, and I am busy but isolated. My children are fighting during Zoom meetings. They are not happy that mommy locks the door to her bedroom. They are not happy being home anymore."