We’re all familiar with that feeling.
One day, everything is going great. The next day, it feels like your world is falling apart. Everything seems to spiral out of control. Your anxiety skyrockets and you begin to scramble for a solution.
Nearly two decades have passed since Americans shared the same emotions as a nation. Many who lived through 9/11 remember coming together to grieve.
Twenty years later, we come together again, this time to flatten the curve amid the novel coronavirus pandemic. But why does it feel so different?
“I think grief and anticipatory grief have been a really present emotion,” said Cielle Smith, a clinical mental health counselor at Salt Lake Community College. “Many of us have had to grieve the loss of the life we were living before this and not knowing when/if it will return, and many [students] have anticipated impending loss of things and people they care about.”
Kesler also shared tips for dealing with the turmoil.
“To calm yourself, you want to come into the present. This will be familiar advice to anyone who has meditated or practiced mindfulness but people are always surprised at how prosaic this can be,” he said. “You can name five things in the room. There’s a computer, a chair, a picture of the dog, an old rug, and a coffee mug. It’s that simple. Breathe. Realize that in the present moment, nothing you’ve anticipated has happened. In this moment, you’re okay … This really will work to dampen some of that pain.”
In response to the pandemic, SLCC’s Center for Health and Counseling transitioned its counseling services to online visits. The CHC also waived its usual fee of $15-$30 per session in order to provide support to students during this crisis.
The CHC has not stated when the fees will return, but did note any student needing assistance can talk with their counselor about the fee waiver program.
For anyone needing further assistance, the CHC recommends talking with a counselor who can help students find additional resources.