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A Blurry Snapshot from Late-Stage Pandemic

·315 words·2 mins
Mental Health Survival

“I know it’s frustrating for a lot of people that the new normal won’t just get here. That there will be an awkward time where things are still weird. That it’s not going to be like a single finger snap and everything goes back to normal,” I say to my friend. “But I honestly think that’s what’s going to work the best for me. I think I’m going to need a little while to adjust.”

She agrees. We’ve been commiserating on how being an anxious person makes any “return to normal” quite fraught.

“With my trust issues, I’ll be trailing things by a good distance. I don’t understand all this jumping the gun. Looking before leaping.”

It’s a good conversation — especially given the time we’re having it.

Late-stage pandemic has been very rough on everyone’s mental health. She very insightfully hit the nail on the head. When I reported my current mental state as “crazy but okay” (look, it is what it is), she replied that this is how everyone else seems to be doing as well.

I know a lot of folks who are simply too drained to even talk — yes, even at a distance, asynchronously, and/or virtually. And I know a lot of other folks who are showing their exhaustion by engaging in mean and/or rude ways. They are present (virtually) but not the best version of themselves.

I personally am in a low-energy state. I take care of my business (adulting, self-care, etc.), but I spend a lot of time overwhelmed beyond that.

“I’m so proud of us,” I say to my friend. “Yes, we’ve all gotten weird. Yes, we’re tired. But we’re still here. We’re still hanging in there. Good for us.”

She agrees.

It’s a very small moment of emotional connection, but given how tired and stressed everyone is, it means a lot to me.

Good for us.


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