So much had already happened just before the Enhanced  Community Quarantine was enforced. My sister was rushed to the hospital for something the doctors  still cannot explain. My wife became seriously ill. Then my father passed away a few days later.

Day One of the lockdown wasn't too good either. I woke up and took a long look at all the bookings in my calendar that just vanished into thin air. I went outside and decided I needed to make something immediately. I began sawing, carving, sanding, hammering, smashing, and taking things apart just to take my mind off the gloom I was feeling.

At first, it was to keep myself from feeling helpless over situations that I couldn't understand, much less control. But when I started seeing finished pieces at the end of the day, the fulfillment of having made something with my hands comforted me, so I decided to press on and push myself harder with every piece that followed.

Making things soon became my 'ikigai'- a beautiful Japanese word I learned about in my church- that refers to the reason why you get out of bed excitedly in the mornings, when it was so tempting to just stay there and mope.

I read somewhere that it is during difficult times that you discover there are things you can do that you never thought you could. Perhaps that is true. So despite these strange, and incomprehensible times when so many, including me, have no idea when the next job will come, I find that I can still be grateful because I learned something new about myself. And I have been given the time to explore a different path.

More importantly, all of this has once again convinced me that God can work through any circumstance, no matter how dismal, to turn things around in the most unexpected and surprising ways.


A portion of the proceeds from sales of this exhibit will go to displaced live event workers, whose jobs have been rendered nonexistent (hopefully only temporarily) by the Covid-19 pandemic.