Disclaimer: In Real Life is a platform for everyday people to share their experiences and voices. All articles are personal stories and do not necessarily echo In Real Life\u2019s sentiments. Nina* (*not her real name), 21, is a flight attendant who lost her job in May 2020 due to COVID-19.\u00a0 \u201cWhen the lockdown was announced in March, I was on a return flight from overseas and had to be quarantined,\u201d Nina began. \u201cMy roommates had left for their hometowns, so I was completely alone. I just stared at the four walls all day,\u201d she shared. In mid-April, the company announced that due to the quarterly profit loss, one round of retrenchments were to be made, effective in one month. After the announcement, rumours circled within Nina\u2019s colleague groups on what the retrenchments would be based on.\u00a0 Some said it would be on a \u201clast-in first-out\u201d basis, others said it would be performance-based, and a few thought it would be the combination of both.\u00a0 \u201cI lived in constant worry. It felt as though I was in a toxic relationship, waking up everyday wondering: Is it the end today? It was emotionally draining,\u201d Nina added.\u00a0 The first round of retrenchment A month went by, and the company retrenched one batch of staff, stating in their email that it was due to \u2018poor performance\u2019. Luckily for Nina, it wasn\u2019t hers.\u00a0\u00a0 \u201cI was safe,\u201d Nina said. She was ecstatic that she got to fly again. \u201cI got to wear my uniform, everything felt great! At the same time, I knew I needed to give 110% to the job,\u201d she said. Source: Unsplash Things went smoothly after that... or at least that's what Nina thought. In July, rumours began circling around that a second round of retrenchments was imminent.\u00a0 In August, the rumors were proven true, and Nina\u2019s entire batch got the axe. \u201cI had to read the email multiple times before it sunk in. In exactly one month, October 2020, I would no longer be a flight attendant,\u201d she said tearfully. Nina lost a job that she dearly loved.\u00a0 \u201cI felt my whole world crashing down. My whole body went numb. I was frozen to my desk. Even though I saw it coming, I was still shocked.\u201d\u00a0 Nina decided not to share the news with her family. \u201cThey were already going through a lot financially. If I had told them the breadwinner of the family isn\u2019t able to provide income, it would put them over the edge.\u201d Nina called her ex-colleagues instead, and by the end of the conversation, they all just sat down and cried. It\u2019s been two months since Nina is unemployed.\u00a0 While she reports facing tons of financial difficulties, there\u2019s been a silver lining. \u201cI have been taking some modelling gigs and brand sponsorship to have some kind of income. I\u2019ve been very lucky to have that opportunity,\u201d she said. Nina is grateful for having the opportunity to work in the airline industry. \u201cI found friends that became my family. I got to hone my talent. Even when I doubted myself, I gained a lot of experience and lessons. And for that, I am thankful.\u201d \u201cOne day, I hope I can go back to being a flight attendant when the pandemic is over. Until then, I will take what I can get.\u201d The pandemic taught Nina to always look out, \u201cYou might think everything is going smoothly, and suddenly something is thrown at you. So always be prepared for anything,\u201d Nina concluded. For more stories like this, read:\u00a0 \u00a0 These Are Three Malaysians Who Got Fired for the Most Ridiculous Reasons and After Malaysia's Borders Were Closed, Here's What 5 Pilots Are Doing To Survive If you like what you read, follow us on Facebook & Instagram.