Mental Health during the Pandemic

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Mental Health during the Pandemic

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On March 11th, 2020, my life changed drastically. Just over a month into my second semester of my freshman year at Duquesne University, I was excited to keep making memories with people who became like a second family to me. However, news of a virus on the other side of the world was spreading quickly. We never thought that it would come to this country or affect us in the slightest. But on this day, the entire student body received an email that would absolutely crush me: the email from the president of the University telling us that we would need to leave. When I received this news, I do not know which I was more scared of, this mysterious virus or not being able to see my new friends for a long time. At this point, I did not know how the virus was going to affect me. I had absolutely no idea how much tragedy was about to spread throughout the country. All I knew was that the high of being a college student, with independence and a new group of amazing people was being ripped away from me like a snap of the fingers. As soon as I got home, all I did was complain to my parents that I wished I was at school. Each time I did this, I would end up feeling terrible, because I knew that people were suffering. However, even though I knew I shouldn’t, I felt like I was suffering too.
My entire life, I was raised as an only child. As a kid and in high school, I had an amazing group of friends that I still talk to today. When I went to college, I started spending every waking moment with my new group of friends, whether it be doing homework, watching movies, etc. I knew I wasn’t going to be with them year-round, but I knew that I was not ready to leave them in the middle of March. After all, the semester wasn’t even over yet. Spending the rest of my semester at home was extremely difficult for me. I felt so lonely, even though my friends were just a phone call or text away. However, every time I communicated with them, I somehow felt further away from them. It was a constant reminder that I should be with them, but I could not be. Throughout the last months of the semester and into the summer, my mental health rapidly. I knew I was experiencing a small form of depression, but I did not want to admit it to anyone because there were people in the world that were suffering more as a result of the virus. I soon found some form of comfort when I realized that other teenagers and first-year college students were going through the same thing as me. So many people were taken away from the people and places that they loved most, and everyone was having a hard time coping. The coronavirus has put the entire world through a lot, but each day I have hope that the end is near, and that we will all be reunited with the world we used to know.

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This item was submitted on February 10, 2021 by [anonymous user] using the form “Share Your Story” on the site “A Journal of the Plague Year”:

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