BY: ABUBACAR JABBIE
As we enter year 2 of our new normal, we have all had to make adjustments to our way of life. Covid hit us fast and hard and came with much loss, pain, and trauma. A lot of people lost their means of income, their loved ones, and the normalcy of just being able to visit friends and relatives or even go to sports games. Our mental health is at its worst in history, as are levels of anxiety, trauma, and PTSD (Posttraumatic stress disorder).
We’ve had to learn to connect remotely and even adapt to new unfamiliar burial and marriage practices. As many psychiatrists have reported, such drastic and immediate changes are bound to have a deep and lasting effect on all of us. Children have had to study from home and not see their friends for months on end. We have to be mindful of our children’s behaviors as they do not yet have the words to express their anxiety, unfamiliarity, fears, or emotions.
GBV and substance abuse have also been on the increase during this time due to the stress of extended lockdowns. There is no blueprint on how to impose effective lockdowns, preserve health and keep the economy going. Every country around the world is flying blind and adjusting and tweaking as they go along. Businesses have been disseminated and families’ means of income have suffered. Some small informal businesses have all but shut down forever.