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The news is on 24 hours a day. COVID-19 briefings are an everyday affair. Listening to the governor spew out new rules and regulations has become the new normal.

Fearing the unknown is an already too-real phenomenon, but how can we find peace in the unknown when there is no way to unplug from it? How can we unplug when normalcy has become a thing of the past?

I know the struggle. I have lived it over the past six months. I have sat by the TV and hung onto every word that I heard. I have had to adapt to a completely new education system seemingly overnight. 

We have all lived that struggle: the constant battle between trying to maintain our lives and staying healthy, worrying for your own safety and the safety of others, all while trying to understand an unknown virus. These are universal struggles, they are felt globally by everyone as the coronavirus has progressed.

Fear of the unknown, being glued to the television and unconsciously preparing for the worst takes a toll on anyone’s mental health. What has been lost within the chaos is the prioritization of those who already struggle with mental health issues. Loneliness during quarantine has put dangerous levels of stress on the mental well-being of those who already suffer. 

Lack of human contact, even in spaces that are now open and functioning, is excruciating to deal with for those who battle depression and crave interaction with people. For the new school year, many had hopes for more in-person classes. Unfortunately, due to the rising number of cases, many universities have declared remote learning for the remainder of the semester.

I spoke with a few friends who have been actively living and battling with their mental health throughout the pandemic. While some have been able to find their bearings and adjust, others have been struggling in silence.

The added stress of maneuvering through yet another semester of online learning is hitting those with anxiety extremely hard. I can personally attest to the added anxiety of remote education. Struggling with anxiety throughout the entire pandemic has been challenging, but trying to stay organized and on top of school work without any face-to-face interaction has pushed me to new limits.

Students are facing a constant challenge everyday. With everything up in the air and no definite timeline in sight, it’s hard to adjust and stay motivated. 

Feelings of angst and nervousness seem to be a common theme among students. I can’t put it any other way: being a student right now is difficult and we’re trying our best to adapt and overcome. If you are struggling with your mental health or any pre-existing conditions, please don’t be afraid to seek help or assistance.

You matter, you are loved and you are not alone in this. 

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