Just in March I was planning on going to Spain with my cousin on a “finding myself” journey after heart break. Turning 30 years old was approaching and with my job barely making ends meet, life seemed a bit mundane. I craved more inspiration. All of our plans collectively came crashing down when COVID-19 came. At first, when I heard what was going on in Italy, I was very much in denial, as perhaps most of us were.
As a social worker, my homeless clients with HIV were already struggling in NYC, that when COVID-19 hit, everything that was already difficult became even harder. We all have a story.
Suddenly my “existential crisis” seemed minimal in comparison. Sometimes, we do take for granted the little things. Right now, I am living with family to save money and am very self-conscious of that. However, the pandemic helped reflect people in worse situations than me. We don’t realize how having a roof over our head is such a blessing. As well as our health…
I believe that COVID-19 can teach us a lot. Politics aside, I think all of us can agree that the little things are now suddenly the big things. I’m not saying this is a good thing and I am glad it is happening, absolutely not. But I am hoping that it brings to light to not take anyone nor anything for granted.
Everyone is on high alert and everyone is being triggered. The unknown can be very scary. Even if you haven’t always struggled with anxiety, you may find yourself suddenly in a panic and overthinking. Those who already struggle with mental health are going to have symptoms that are exasperated. We are all truly being tested.
To help me get through, personally, I put more value more-so than ever on taking care of my mental health. Prioritizing is essential. But sometimes, we tend to forget about our mental health as other needs take precedence.
As a teen, I would tap into creativity whenever I was struggling emotionally. It was a survival toolkit. Music was everything to me as well as writing. I wrote poems, journaled, and songs. I sang my heart out and played guitar. My songs and writing helped take whatever was building up inside of me outside of myself. It was extremely healing. But over the years, I seemed to have lost it. Other things seemed to be more “important” and creativity was left at the door.
Well, during this unfortunate time, I seemed to pick it up again. Little by little. And I forgot how healing this was for me. I believe we all have something inside of us that is a gift. Perhaps multiple gifts. And we tend to neglect them. We might say, “I’m too old for that” or, “I don’t have time.” I know I did. And I almost forgot how much joy it brought me. I almost forgot the beauty of life even when everything is falling apart. Doesn’t hard times make the greatest songs, anyway?
The point of this article is to encourage you to tap into your creative energy. To do something you love that maybe you haven’t done in a while. Or perhaps to try something new. You might discover something about yourself. Maybe you never even dared to try. Maybe the world can benefit from something you have to offer. And now more than ever, we so need this.