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In 2020, I battled the pandemic and myself. Now I am forced to do it all over again

Campus Voice is an initiative by ThePrint where young Indians get an opportunity to express their opinions on a prevalent issue.

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I still remember seeing the news flash, “First coronavirus case of India confirmed in Kerala”. My eyes were glued to the television screen like never before. At that point I was naive enough to compare Covid-19 to the Nipah virus and believed that everything was going to be fine in a few days.

When the 14-day lockdown was announced, I was with my friends making plans for a vacation. We had to postpone it and promised to meet each other after all the madness subsided. Little did we know of what lay ahead of us.

Days became weeks and weeks turned into months. Along with each passing day, my resilience was put to test. Initially, it was easy to put up, but then as time passed, my mental health slowly started to decline.

A few months before the pandemic, I was diagnosed with PMDD (Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder) — clinical depression and anxiety and I never thought that one day all of this will weigh me down.

Fighting two battles simultaneously

As the lockdown confined the entire world within four walls, I also suffered a lot. Not only was I unable to consult my psychologist regularly, there were even days when medical supply would halt.

When half of the world was complaining about “how boring staying indoor was”, another half of the globe was fighting two battles simultaneously — one against the pandemic and one with themselves.

After all this suffering, I finally made up my mind to fight back. From reading books to cooking for my loved ones, I tried it all. Shifting my focus and energy into something productive helped me a lot.

And yet, there were days when one was back to square one, but taking it one step a time was a game changer.

In February 2021, when college reopened for me and offline classes started, I was finally out of captivity.

I was going with the flow and trying out new things, failing at a few but, in the end, learning.

But now, here I am back in the captivity of those very same walls due to the second wave.

Sometimes I feel I have got it all, on other days it’s a loop of bitter emotions. Now I am dusting those tried and tested tricks that helped me keep my sanity intact nearly a year ago, as it is going to help me to reclaim my life back and I need every bit of it.

Raveena Ravindran is a student of Kristu Jayanti College, Autonomous, Bengaluru

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