COVID Depression

I cry out to God; yes, I shout.
Oh, that God would listen to me!
When I was in deep trouble,
I searched for the Lord.
All night long I prayed, with hands lifted toward heaven,
but my soul was not comforted.
I think of God, and I moan,
overwhelmed with longing for his help. Interlude
You don’t let me sleep.
I am too distressed even to pray!
I think of the good old days,
long since ended,
when my nights were filled with joyful songs.
I search my soul and ponder the difference now.
Has the Lord rejected me forever?
Will he never again be kind to me?
Is his unfailing love gone forever?
Have his promises permanently failed?
Has God forgotten to be gracious?
Has he slammed the door on his compassion? Interlude
10 And I said, “This is my fate;
the Most High has turned his hand against me.”
11 But then I recall all you have done, O Lord;
I remember your wonderful deeds of long ago.
12 They are constantly in my thoughts.
I cannot stop thinking about your mighty works.
13 O God, your ways are holy.
Is there any god as mighty as you?
14 You are the God of great wonders!
You demonstrate your awesome power among the nations.
15 By your strong arm, you redeemed your people,
the descendants of Jacob and Joseph. Interlude
16 When the Red Sea saw you, O God,
its waters looked and trembled!
The sea quaked to its very depths.
17 The clouds poured down rain;
the thunder rumbled in the sky.
Your arrows of lightning flashed.

18 Your thunder roared from the whirlwind;
the lightning lit up the world!
The earth trembled and shook.

19 Your road led through the sea,
your pathway through the mighty waters—
a pathway no one knew was there!
20 You led your people along that road like a flock of sheep,
with Moses and Aaron as their shepherds                                                                                                       Psalm 77

I don’t know if the DSM-5 (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual) people have come up with a revision to include a diagnosis of “Covid Depression”. They might. Maybe they should. This virus has been in our lives for the greater part of the year 2020, and it has colored everything in our lives. Any issues that my clients may have had prior to this virus and its aftermath have been greatly exacerbated by the current climate. It literally makes everything worse.

Whether or not you were depressed prior to the COVID crisis, I can bet that you carry a low level of depression now. I do. Anytime our standards of stability are upset, we respond with some reaction. We try to regain normal. The presence of COVID has stymied many of those attempts at trying to regain normal. Our response is often a complex brew of sadness, anger, fear, and helplessness. Collectively, that jumble of feelings can be called depression.

Reactive depression is a thing. We all experience it in our lives, and we then must do something about it. Feeling like there is no escape is absolutely the worst place to be, but for a while, that is the case. Then we recognize that we can VISIT that place of depression, but we do not want to LIVE there.

For me, I recognize the signs in myself. I am a little bit irritable, sad about the fact that this summer does not really FEEL like summer. I wonder when this oppression will end. How does our economy survive? When does the vaccine get tested and made available? So many questions to which I have no answers.

So, I do what I can do, and I try not to get bogged down by what I cannot do. I can look at my attitude and remind myself of the many blessings I have. I can wear a mask and social distance, because I think that is what good science recommends. I can do the things that at least approach normal, like eating out at restaurants on their patios. I can continue to exercise and work. I can reach out to others to support them.

So, that is my therapy plan. I assume that you have some “COVID Depression” like me. What is your therapy plan?

 

Prayer: Father, you know the big picture that we cannot see. I trust that your plans are good and healing for us, Amen.

 

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