How Covid-19 Has Affected My Mental Health.


Marlene Henriquez, Reporter

As many of you may know, May is Mental Health Awareness Month. In honor of that, I am going to share how my mental health has been affected during this time.

To be completely transparent, I have been struggling a bit this past month and the end of April. I had a story saved in my drafts where I talked how I had been staying productive during quarantine. It hasn’t seen the light of day, because I felt odd putting it up on the site when I, myself, was no longer productive.

One thing, you must know about me is that I am constantly busy. I work, I go to school full time, I take care of my diabetic grandmother, and I run my parents’ errands while they are at work. To some, this may seem like so little and that could be true, but we all lead different lives and we have different priorities. To me, this has been my life for so long, that I had my schedule down to a T. Every day of my week was meticulously planned and there wasn’t much room to process my emotions sometimes.

When the quarantine started and I lost my job, I thought that all that extra time I know had in my hands would allow me to hustle even more. And I did, for the first few weeks. In mid to late April, I had reached my apex and I felt completely burnt out. All of a sudden, I didn’t want to be productive anymore and I just wanted to lay in bed for hours, and sometimes I did. I would just lay in bed and when it was finally time to get up, I would feel deep regret. I felt regret because I would look at the time and feel ashamed because I thought, “I could have done so much in the time that I was just laying there.”

Because I felt such regret, I would sit at my computer for hours, making up for the time that I had lost. When I felt I didn’t make enough progress with my homework, I would stay up super late just to feel like I had accomplished something. I’d go to sleep, wake up, and the cycle would continue again.

Again, to be transparent, I had fallen behind in my math class and I felt ashamed that my life had been completely turned upside down due to coronavirus and that I didn’t take advantage of all this extra time I had been given. It was around this time that I found out my great-aunt had passed away due to coronavirus and I felt extreme guilt because I didn’t even know she was sick in the first place. I felt guilt that a member of my family passed away and here I was, unable to get out of bed, unable to do my math homework, or attend some of my Zoom meetings.

I have good days, days where I have felt productive and I have had bad days. Days that are so bad, my mom has to come into my room and drag me out to the living room. I’m blessed in that sense, to have family that cares.

I have good days, I have bad days, and I have days that are just okay. These days, as we near the end of the semester, I am having more good days than bad days. I wake up earlier now and I go for a run around my block and I take my time and space out my day so I don’t feel overwhelmed and I take on tasks one at a time. I am also trying to appreciate all the little things because I am one of the lucky ones who are healthy.

I say all this to say, you are not alone if you feel sad or stir crazy or like you’re getting cabin fever. Remember, we are one day closer to all of this being over.

When this semester ends, I am definitely going to sleep for a few days in a row, though, because I deserve a break. Just like you do.

If you, or someone you care about, are feeling overwhelmed with emotions like sadness, depression, or anxiety, or feel like you want to harm yourself or others: