Oh hey there. Today we are officially living in February of 2021. What does that mean? Well, it means that we survived the year of 2020. For that, I think we all deserve a pat on the back. Or do we? The cynical part of me says life could be hard any time. A global pandemic just made it a little more acceptable for things to be difficult, and difficulty to be more widespread. Sure, living in cities that are shut down, having full hospitals, thousands of people dying from the same cause in a short amount of time, adjusting to virtual schooling, thousands of jobs lost, and all of the other consequences of the pandemic are nothing to minimize. While it may be an unpopular opinion, I am going to go out on a limb and say many parts of life can be hard. So far, 2021 is still hard. The national difficulties have shifted ever so slightly with a vaccination for the virus being administered as quickly as possible, so the pandemic looks to be improving. Things are looking up. Right?
What if you are someone that experiences mental health issues every day? What about the thousands of people who are not able to leave their home due to the fear of the outside? What about the thousands of people who die from suicide each year, the lack of mental health beds in hospitals, the lack of mental health services, the thousands who struggle to maintain a job? What if you were to experience constant stress from the consequences of those inadequacies in our society? Oh and then add a negative stigma on top of that. In other words, mind health issues that are out of your control chronically stress you AND there are very few people to talk to about it.
Mental health issues are often kept a secret. COVID-19 issues, on the other hand, are openly talked about, something to commiserate with one another about. Heck, even governmental assistance has been expected for the COVID-19 pandemic. While oftentimes, mental health services are the first to be cut from public funding. Ironically, the impact of COVID-19 has actually increased the mental health issues in society.
So what’s my point?
Well, my hope and prayer is that as the viral pandemic crisis dissipates, our eyes can open up to the mental health pandemic that is plaguing our society. I know that it may sounds exhausting to go from one pandemic to the next, especially when the mind health pandemic seems to spread so silently. Life can be exhausting. Life is exhausting. Nevertheless, the mind health pandemic must be prioritized. The first step is talking about it.
Join me in the conversation.