“I was hired to document the COVID-19 situation in Singapore, and my six-years-old daughter was worried about me getting exposed to the Coronavirus. I found this note in my bag one morning before I set out to work. "Drink vitamins everyday", it said. The pandemic affects kids in subtle ways: Leanne doesn't want to see pictures of anything COVID-19-related, and she asks to change the topic whenever she hears a conversation about the pandemic." Photographer’s statement: "Staying in lockdown is hard, but being in lockdown with two kids while working and parenting is even harder. As a freelance photojournalist, I am used to traveling the world and documenting the lives of others. COVID-19 put all this on hold, and like everyone else in Singapore I was stuck at home during Phase 1 CB. For over two months my wife and I lived, loved, worked and raised our kids within the four walls of our apartment. It's an emotional roller coaster ride replete with joys, frustrations and no small amount of hardship. My parents and grandparents lived through the Japanese occupation, and as a child I remember joining the anti-Marcos 'revolution' with my siblings back in the Philippines. I see the pandemic as something similar - a great upheaval that will have a profound effect on my own family years to come. For my kids and for posterity, I decided to document in earnest our lockdown experience. They may be too young to remember this god-awful pandemic (my daughter was 6, my son was 10 months old then), but I hope this pictorial account will serve as a record of what our family endured together. Most photos you see here are bright and sunny. Many accounts of life in lockdown tend to be dreary and depressing, but I beg to differ. As parents, my wife and I believe it is our responsibility to have a positive outlook during these trying times. We owe it to our kids to keep life fun, interesting, and as normal as it can get. Or maybe it was their presence that kept the light warm and shining within these four walls. Whatever the case may be, this lockdown experience is one that will always help define our family."--Contributed by Lester Ledesma, as part of the "Documenting COVID-19 in Singapore" collection community call. Title devised by Library staff.
All rights reserved. Lester Ledesma, 2020