It seems that right now, whenever we open Facebook or Twitter or turn on the news, we’re bombarded with more and more bad news. Another 50 deaths as caused by COVID-19 somewhere. The current number of patients who have tested for positive has risen by 400 in the last 24 hours alone somewhere else. The virus spares no one. Young, old, in between. The question is only; how vulnerable are you? Despite the fact that anyone can get it, some can get it much easier than others. Maybe you fall into this category. Maybe you’re lucky, and you don’t. Regardless, everyone has been asked, or in some cases, even forced, to take stricter measures.
This has left some people in a rough situation; maybe they are unable to get groceries because they are more vulnerable and worried about the risk of contracting the virus. Maybe they are unable to attend regular classes and are struggling with their studies on their own, without the aid of a teacher.
I have been noticing COVID-19 bringing out, yes, in some cases the worst in people (looking at you, hoarders & people defying social distancing rules in favor of a house party) but I have also seen it bring out the best in people. Online support in various cities across the country, setting up Facebook groups to offer their help, whether it’s getting your groceries for you or walking your dog. People offering their help in the form of free tuition; tutoring students online with their homework, helping to prepare them for their exams that, unfortunately, will come around eventually. Articles have been shared of people sliding letters under neighbors’ doors, keeping their distance but still reaching out if they need any assistance or even if they are doing okay. Others do their own part by trying to get their neighbors to exercise on their balconies, or even sing on their balconies all together! Organizations are offering their language lessons online; gyms and dance institutions conducting exercises while live-streaming on Youtube.
COVID-19 has brought many difficulties to light; the undersupplied hospitals, the insufficient amount of hospital beds, the essential workers still needed during this global crisis who have many times, in the past, been overlooked– all of whom are now continuing to go to work in these troubling times, and much more. However, this situation has also brought out the kindness in people. The willingness to help. The sense of community in many cities.
It can be hard to see the light when all you seem to be bombarded with is darkness. A new protective measure put into place. A new restriction on where you can or can’t go. But it’s important to remember that, right now, this is a global crisis which means that we are all in this together. It’s important to remember to take care of each other. Whether that’s a family member, a roommate, a friend or even a neighbor who you don’t know very well. If you’re feeling overwhelmed or anxious, chances are they are too. Reach out (in a way that still respects social distancing though). And if you’re feeling like the cabin fever is starting to settle in or you’re getting lonely, remember that right now, the Internet is your biggest aid. There are so many things to find that can help you. And there are ways that you can help your own mental health right now that are also important to keep in mind.
We don’t know yet how long we will be dealing with COVID-19 at this level, but it’s key that we keep our heads towards the light, do our best to work together and stay positive; panic will only make it worse (and let’s face it, it doesn’t help anyone). If you need a little good news, China has had no new cases for the third day in a row! If they can get through this, we can too.
*If you understand this reference, I’m extra proud of you. Have a cookie. If you didn’t, it’s a little play on words from Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, which I recommend.