Pandemic Induced Insanity

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I read an article this week, where the author pointed out that after this pandemic none of us will come out the same, none of us will come out without having lost something.

Well, I’ll tell you for free, we haven’t even hit the half way point and I have lost most of my sanity.

I was hoping to write a poignant, somewhat inspiring article, but sadly I fear my brain has evaporated faster than the rubbing alcohol I’ve been spraying all over the place.

Case in point; notice how this was published on Saturday and not its usual Friday?

That’s because genius here lost track of the days and suddenly realised it was Thursday and had to beg her sweet and oh so kind editor for a one-day extension.

It’s been approximately 984 days since I went into self-isolation/social distancing/ quarantine/lockdown or whatever the hell we are calling it today and it has become apparent I have lost the plot.

I am worried about the effects of isolation on my children. My son has decided clothing is now optional and spends most of the day naked, pork and beans all over the place.

Homeschooling is clearly not my forte. I thank the Lord my children are only three and five, so whatever educational damage I have inflicted can hopefully be rectified in time.

I cannot help but be wrecked by guilt when I see the social media posts of these super mothers doing these amazing lessons in astrophysics and here I am struggling to get them to sing the alphabet.

Social media, I think, may also be another factor in the decline of mental wellbeing. From the endless Covid-19 updates that range from doom and gloom to the bizarre i.e. it’s being caused by 5G and used to force us into a cashless system, to the posts from people using time to master crafts or cooking, its simply too much.

Regarding those using this time to try new recipes, I think I speak for a great portion of the population when I say LEAVE DOUBLES ALONE! We all miss them, but jeeze and ages leave it to the professionals please.

Back to social media, every morning I wake up and lie to myself that I am just going to lightly glance at my feed then turn it off. Yeah that doesn’t happen, it’s like quick sand, one toe in and before I know it, I’m neck deep.

Beyond the isolation and bombardment of information, I find myself living in with an overwhelming fear that someone I love will get sick.

My husband, being in manufacturing has been deemed essential. I feel sick every morning when he goes to work. He’s a natural germaphobe so I am provided with some comfort that he is anally washing his hands and sanitising his surroundings throughout the day but what I worry about is some moron sneezing fatal pathogens on him.

Unfortunately our greatest threat is the irresponsible actions of others. They are out of our control and it’s terrifying.

My heart goes out to the families and loved ones of doctors, nurses, police officers and all medical and hospital staff that are standing on the frontlines in our country’s fight against Covid-19. How they are holding their stuff together is beyond me.

I feel extremely helpless. I am fortunate to sit on the executive committee of a charity that in the last two weeks has been able to work with two amazing community activists and provided food stuff and meals to parents who were already seeing hard times and depended on the school feeding programme to ensure their children got at least one good meal a day.

As a mother I cannot fathom the heartbreak one must feel hearing your children complain of being hungry and having little if nothing to give them.

Despite my charity work I wish I could do more. I worry about those who have lost their jobs or those who are struggling to keep a roof over their heads in a time like this.

So I just try, I try to coordinate what I can, give what I can and reach out where I can. It’s all that I can do at the moment.

The World Health Organization (WHO) spoke of the effects the pandemic could and would have on the mental health of the population at a press conference held on March 26.

The stress, the fear and isolation were the key triggers to the anxiety and depression many of us may be feeling right now.

How does WHO recommend we react to this rapidly changing unpredictable environment we’ve found ourselves in? By sticking together… not literally for obvious reasons so put those high-five hands down germ spreaders!

By reaching out to our friends, our neighbours, those whom know may be struggling. To keep us afloat, we need to remember we are in this together and act as a part of greater community to keep hope alive.

Give your tanty, old friend, weird neighbour a call, see how they’re doing. Give if you can and remember this is but a temporary moment in our history. While this may not alleviate all of our inner turmoil, it will help.

Yes, none of us will come out of this the same or without losing something.

Maybe we come out of this having lost our indifference and apathetic attitudes towards our countrymen. Hopefully we can come out of this more united towards making a stronger and kinder TT.

So stay strong Trinidad and Tobago, listen to our super patient chief medical officer, stop making doubles at home and reach out to someone. A phone call, a WhatsApp, can make all the difference right now.

And finally, keep yuh tail indoors or at least six feet away from others!





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