Like everyone else, actress Ashna Habib Bhabna has also been stuck at home since last month, but she is very much present online. She is uploading photos of her painting and dance videos on Facebook to try and keep herself busy. But nothing is succeeding in giving her peace.
In a conversation with The Business Standard, Bhabna said, "Like everyone else, I am also anxious. What will happen to us? After this crisis is over, what will happen to the entertainment world? Who will invest in films and dramas in the future? These things worry me. A very tough time is waiting for us."
Even though her mind is heavy with these thoughts, Bhabna is trying to distract herself by engaging in painting. During shutdown, she has already created more than 50 paintings, using only makeup products as medium. She used products such as lipstick, mascara and eye shadow, and earned praise for her unusual approach to painting.
"It is not like I can paint well," Bhabna said while speaking to The Business Standard, adding, "I have never learned painting. The painting classes I took as a child are my only guidance. While stuck at home, I thought I should do something that would help me pass the time and keep me distracted. I tried reading novels, but could not concentrate. I tried to watch TV series and movies but did not have the patience. So, I turned to painting."
Bhabna admitted that being praised for her efforts is motivating her. "A painter has to maintain many methods and mediums to paint. Although I do not know all of the methods, I am still letting my feelings work its way on the canvas."
While speaking about her talent for dancing, Bhabna said, "Dancing is in my blood. I have loved dancing since childhood. I am practicing more and more during this shutdown and loving it."
Bhabna is also staying in touch with her friends online. But the coronavirus situation remains a persistent cause of worry in her mind.
She also added that she does not have any friends in the media, but is on very friendly terms with veteran actor and freedom fighter Raisul Islam Asad.
"He used to talk about the liberation war frequently and said the enemy was visible during that time, but the days people had to go through were inexplicable in terms of suffering and agony. No one knew what would happen the next day. But now, the enemy is not even visible, and we do not know what may happen."
Bhabna is following the World Health Organisation (WHO) guidelines for staying safe amid the coronavirus pandemic. She is also trying to not sit still for longer than 20 minutes by doing something productive and using her time carefully to maintain mental peace.
But her heart yearns for her favourite person, who is none other than producer Animesh Aich.
It has been a month since Bhabna last met Animesh, and there is no telling when they will meet again. They both live in Dhanmondi; yet they cannot meet due to the shutdown. They are regularly conversing over the phone, but that is not enough.
"We are keeping track of each other and thinking of better days in the future. I was supposed to work with Animesh in a few dramas, but now everything has come to a standstill," Bhabna laments.
As the conversation came to an end, the actress said, "Right now, I have only one thing to say to everyone, please stay safe and keep your loved ones safe. Stay home, please."