COVID Diaries, Pt. 22
Cloudy with a chance of Depression
Wow, it’s nearly been three months and a lot has happened. The delta variant of the virus ended up being way more transmissive and took over. Vaccinated people are getting breakthrough cases, but the overwhelming majority are those that are unvaccinated.
Quite a bit of the population is still not vaccinated, and they are all at great risk. Hospitals in the South are overwhelmed and the places that did NOT have mask mandates or other restrictions are getting hammered now. Florida and Texas especially. Florida even passed a law to PREVENT schools for requiring masks. It’s all anti-science BS and I just don’t get it.
What does it take for people to see that if you take no precautions, you are going to get sick? It’s simple common sense, but people are so angry to do it.
It’s so nuts that there have been hundreds of cases of people being poisoned by taking a horse de-wormer to protect against COVID. Something that is a poisonous neurotoxin if used incorrectly and is made for livestock somehow seems MORE appealing than a vaccination and masks. Figure that one out.
In other news we’ve pulled out of Afghanistan after 20 years occupying the country. I’m glad, because I’d rather not be pouring money and American lives into that quagmire any longer. It’s the right decision, but the Taliban has already taken over, and we are trying desperately to evacuate Americans and allies. It hasn’t gone well, but we’re out. We just need to help folks who helped us there for 20 years.
Another thing that took place during this time frame was the Olympics that were hosted in Tokyo, Japan. Japan was in the middle of a COVID health crisis, so the games went on without fans, and several athletes could not compete due to testing positive. Another woman was disqualified for cannabis, which is just stupid, and will probably be another blog post at some point. But the main headlines were that Simone Biles, our best gymnast, probably the best gymnast of all time, pulled out of most of the Olympics due to mental health struggles.
Some asshats criticized her, but most of the world took it as a time to really examine mental health for everyone. People realized that even the most elite people deal with mental issues, and it’s okay. It’s okay to take time to work on yourself or get your head right. As similar thing happened with a pro Call of Duty player who took a few weeks off right before the biggest tournament of the season because he was also dealing with mental health struggles.
It’s both sad and comforting to know so many other deal with the same issues. I think it all helped people struggling feel a little less alone. At least I hope so because there have been a lot of people opting out as of late.
Since the pandemic began, both of my daughters have lost friends to suicide. In addition, another girl that was the first playdate of my eldest took her own life. A good friend of ours (who is a teacher) found a guy slumped over in his car in the parking lot. It was a 24-year-old cop who had shot himself. Then, one I can’t even really grasp. A husband of someone we know well walked into a gun store, rented a gun for target practice, took a couple of target shots, and then turned around and shot himself in the chest.
This gun store is 30 seconds from my house, and I drive by it nearly every day. Every time I just get a pit in my stomach wondering how a successful, rich guy with a wife, three kids and a seemingly good life just decides to do that to himself and his family.
But that’s the thing, depression doesn’t make sense. Depression lies to you. It preys on your fears and maximizes your worst thoughts. Depression is real, and a whole lot of people have experienced it during this pandemic.
This, along with the anxiety that the pandemic has brought, is a horrible combo.
If you are reading this, please understand that you are not alone. I’ve been depressed and anxious quite a bit myself over the last year and a half. My family and I have all leaned on each other, and that’s kept us sane. As sane as you can be in a world like this.
Lean on your friends, lean on your family, lean on your pets. There are others that feel the exact same way that you do, and talking about it helps.
We talk openly about our feelings, and we use a lot of dark humor to cope. None of us have been good, but we are there for each other. We also have a mantra, and I’m dedicated to that mantra.
Keep Fucking Going.