Saturday, December 05, 2020

Your Mental Health During the Pandemic


Don't give up, no matter how bleak it looks. You're going to have 'not so good' days, when you find yourself breaking down and throwing in the towel. That's okay. Have your moment. But afterwards, sleep it off. With the days getting shorter, especially when the early day is dreary and rainy, it can mess with your psyche. Sometimes, it feels like the entire day is nighttime, each day meshing into the next, as if it were one. It's like waking up from a nightmare that you can't shake off, but eventually, when you pour your coffee and let the hot shower wash away your anxiety, that same nightmare is almost forgettable. It's the same as having a really bad day. Shake it off with time and much needed sleep. In the morning, it usually feels different and much lighter. Last night, I found myself feeling really anxious, so I called a friend. She managed to make me laugh so much, that my panic attack subsided. She wasn't like, "Okay, now calm down,"---nope. She took my experience and turned it into laughter. She stayed on the phone with me for an entire two hours, and then afterwards, I slept like a baby. Friends like that are truly a blessing. 

Environmental Wellness

This can be anything from your living quarters to who you surround yourself with, in person or remotely. But for now, I'm going to speak about our social circles. This is my take on our response to everything that's going on: you can either survive or die. That's it. I don't mean in the physical sense---I'm talking about our mental health. You need to protect your circle of wellness. For me, I pray for a hedge of protection. Envision your protective bubble, and only let those who edify and uplift you enter your life to enter it---not to be mistaken for those who need help because they're having a crisis. I'm talking about hurt people who try to hurt other people. If you're having a bad day, that does not mean it's okay to tear someone else apart, or hold them responsible for something you did. There are so many people grieving in this world right now, between losing loved ones, and not being able to see loved ones due to the pandemic. It's bringing many to a breaking point. Don't let other people's indirect anger destroy you. It's okay to keep them out of your bubble for now. This is such a crucial time---the most important time, to only have people who are soothing for your soul. I refuse to walk on eggshells, just because someone is literally a ticking time bomb with an axe to grind. I can't afford to lose my sanity over someone else's insanity. Stay away from people who hurt more than they help. It's an unfortunate situation, especially if the person is someone you know or love. I know for myself, I cannot afford to let those toxic fumes slip into my protective bubble. I can't. 

Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. --Ephesians 4:31-32


The "Brave" COVID Deniers 


I get it. There is a lot of information out there regarding the lack of hospitalizations in some 'theories'--- where the virus has mutated into a 'slight cold.' I can speak for myself when I tell you, that for me, COVID was a really bad cold with a high temperature. For others, it may not be the same case. You can choose to listen to what you want in order to feel better, but do what's comfortable for you. The fact is, we cannot control what other people do. They're gonna go out and mingle whether we are for it, or against it. Stay focused. Stick to what you can control: yourself. Decide for yourself if you want to 'shelter-in-place' or live life as you once did back in 2019. I'm not going to judge anyone for living the way they want to. For myself, I've been sheltering-in-place before it was "cool." I work from home, and love being home, and when I want to get out, I walk around the neighborhood or sit outside (weather permitting) or drive off to the park with my dog for a different atmosphere. But that's just my personal life and preferences. Before the second wave hit, my sister called me up and said she was going to drop off a bunch of books for me. We read similar books, so every once in a while, she'll refer a book to me. This time, she said she was doing a "drive-by" knowing how cautious I am with this whole virus ordeal. When I saw her pulling up, she was holding her books at her side and I just caved in and said, "If I order a pizza, will you come in and have dinner with me?" She looked totally shocked. "You mean, for me to come inside your house?" I hadn't see her in almost an entire year. She also gets tested at work, so I felt it was safe--but at this point, I needed to see my family. My heart hurt. It was one of the best nights I've had in a long while. 

With that being said, there are some people in my life who are actually upset that Madelene and I don't venture out to their location and mingle with them. Most of them are mixing in with five or more households at a time, or not being cautious enough. Someone said to me, "You're still not letting people inside your home?" ...No! If the plumber or our maintenance guy comes in, then yes. Back in the summer, I had no problem letting one of my friends in, because she's as cautious as we are. It's my preference in this strange time. It has nothing to do with "you"---it has everything to do with my sanity, whether or not the virus is real or fake or whatever your little heart believes. My home is my safe place. I can't afford to keep thinking late at night, "Is that tickle in my throat what I think it is?" I can't. 

I think all of us have let our COVID fatigue slip just a little, where we allow a little 'normalcy' back into our lives. And to be honest, that's okay. There's this hashtag on Twitter and Facebook called, #FilmYourHospital, and it shows people recording their trips to the emergency departments, just to show the public that it is completely empty. Some of it really makes you question the entire pandemic, but being that I have friends and family who work in hospitals, the info is very different. Hospitals are being overwhelmed and ICUs are filling up very quickly. To be honest, when I see my friends and family who work in hospitals trek out to restaurants, meet friends, and have people over, that to me is a sign that their hospital is doing okay. Right now, they're either at work or at home. People love a good conspiracy theory, however, make sure that conspiracy theory holds some truth to it. Otherwise, you're risking your health as well as others. I'm playing it safe, because I truly don't know what I believe. It's like asking if there was voter fraud. I. don't. know. 

Stay In Your Lane

Let people do what they want. Make sure you focus on you and your surroundings. For myself, my main concern is my relationship with God, making sure my relationship with my better half is nurturing and loving as well as keeping my home clean and cozy. I can say we're in end times because of this pandemic, but this has happened 100 years ago with the Spanish Flu. History usually repeats itself, and for whatever reason, people seem to forget that. "Well, what about all the civil unrest?" It's happened many times before, and it'll continue to happen again and again. It's human nature. No one knows the day or hour, not even the angels in heaven. That can be found in the book of Matthew. If you're a Christian preaching that it's the end times, read the verse again. Some Christians are having dreams and calling themselves prophets. Well, maybe. I don't know. Nobody knows. Our timeframe does not match heaven's. So they can definitely be dreaming about the rapture, but they haven't got a clue as to 'when.' And that's just a biblical fact. Whatever you believe---go with it. But don't tear someone else apart just because they don't believe what you believe. Stay in your lane and remember, it's okay to have a different opinion or belief. 

We're all suffering in different ways. 

May God bless you and keep you. 

For more of Deb's articles, please visit: www.debrapasquella.com
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