For me this semester was an emotional rollercoaster. It began with my boyfriend and I getting engaged literally on top of a mountain. A few weeks later I learned that half of my team was laid off and their jobs were outsourced to contractors in India. I thought I would have been a part of that lay off, so I took 4 classed this semester – on top of full time work. Then I fell on the ice and got a concussion, spent two weeks in my bed in the darkness, slowly went back to work and have headaches almost everyday – 3 months later (the last picture below is my acupuncture in case you have a weak stomach)! Then my fiancees dad took a turn for the worse, on my birthday we found out that the cancer was filling his entire torso and all they could do was manage his pain. My fiance left soon after and went home to Fargo. I could not go because we have a dog and I have uncontrolled asthma and am at higher risk for Coronavirus. So for an entire month of quarantine I was alone, sad that my fiancees dad passed away and I could not be there for the services and to support Craig and his brothers. Now we are in the midst of trying to figure out what to do with his dads furniture, car, apartment in the middle of a global pandemic when things are closed and people are scared and it is literally chaos. Oh and we can’t even plan our wedding because the state is basically shut down.
Why am I telling you all of this? For two reasons. 1. My therapist told me to write it down, that it might help my anxiety and depression to “let the feelings out” 2. Because you should know that there are resources out there if you went through a shitty semester, month or pandemic.
According to the CDC’s website “Mental health disorders are among the most burdensome health concerns in the United States. Nearly 1 in 5 US adults aged 18 or older (18.3% or 44.7 million people) reported any mental illness in 2016.2 In addition, 71% of adults reported at least one symptom of stress, such as a headache or feeling overwhelmed or anxious.”
Mental health is something that has been stigmatized for a long time. But I think that is changing, there are podcasts about mental heath, there are apps, and there are now companies that exclusively offer virtual therapy that you can access via chat, email or video calls! Metrostate offers walk-in counseling, many workplaces offer free emergency assistance including mental health services.
I guess my point is that you’re going to get through whatever you are going through faster and with more success if you seek out the help of friends, family, and professionals. When I scheduled time with my therapist I told her that I was at the point that I realized how negative that I was being in all of my conversations with friends and I didn’t want to only be negative because it wasn’t helping me feel better.
I found that it helps me to have to things to look forward to, like 5 more classes until I graduate. A wedding sometime next year. Oh, and I am engaged and we have this ridiculous dog who make us laugh out loud literally every day!