Realms of Relationships – Wrapping up the Year and Covid Lingering Effects
Welcome to my Realms of Relationships post finale for 2021. I hope you all have been enjoying my articles where I share some of own experiences about different types of relationships. Next year I’ll be back with my travel columns and later in the year I’ll be back with more relationship talk, and maybe even something new! Today I’m sharing this post here I originally wrote for my monthly column over at Sally Cronin’s Smorgasbord Blog Magazine.
In this edition, I want to talk about relationships that have been altered or have taken on new awakenings through the global pandemic we’ve all been living through for almost two years now.
Once all the lockdowns began, life as everyone knew it changed. Suddenly, moms and dads are working at home, trying to get their jobs done as they had to adapt to helping school their kids digitally – a feat in itself for the technically challenged.
How we’re affected by the ages:
Many couples forced to spend more time together during lockdown discovered they loved and missed going to work to get out of the house to avoid 24/7 with a partner, while some other relationships were strengthened in that time as many re-discovered, reconnected, and re-evaluated their relationships. Some friendships were strengthened, while some others were let go of as realizations and evaluations of our lives took place when we were restricted from seeing anyone. So many were affected from quarantine conditions from unemployment adding financial strains, dealing with sick and dying loved ones, disrupted homelife, home schooling and growing mental illnesses because of forced conditions having created havoc in so many people’s lives. Many statistics have been cited about the increase of divorce enquiries and proceedings. I also must make mention of the many stranded at home stuck in abusive relationships with no escape.
Young children are equally affected at differing crucial stages of their learning, as well as hampered social skills while not being able to play or interact in person with others. Many young children and toddlers missing crucial interacting at nursery schools and play dates spending two of their earliest years either missing social interaction – where they learn to socialize by playing and learning together with other children, while others too young to realize the way they are growing up in their earliest years at home isn’t situation normal.
Middle-grade and teenaged kids were desperately missing social interaction. As they craved their usual activities with friends at a time of exploration of the world at their curious ages, suddenly having their ‘regular’ lives ripped out from them stuck at home with family in their new constricted lives, have had to find ways to adapt. How many suicides do we even imagine have occurred because of the mental disruption of their lives?
The elderly have had to endure not only extra lonely times with aching hearts as their loved ones ached with the worry for them, but many of the elderly who rely on the help and visits from others were devastatingly left out in the cold. The long, lonely hours of being alone became so much more profound for both the sick and the agile – those that require daily visits for care, and those denied the ability for visitations from loved ones. Yes, digital apps helped to connect some and not others, became the backup for visual virtual visits, but there is no substitute for a real human visit where we can look into someone’s eyes and feel the love, a touch, a hug, and human physical compassion, and this missing of human interaction left a gaping hole in the hearts of too many.
The sick who couldn’t get proper medical attention and consequently dying before their time – like my husband, who died BECAUSE of the Covid epidemic halting regular doctor visits and no way to get into a hospital unless there was an evident and immediate emergency. Those that actually feared going to a hospital for serious ailments because they were afraid they’d catch the Covid inside the hospital. The undiagnosed cancers, deeming treatment too late – LIKE my husband. The strokes and heart attacks people died from because they refused to go to hospitals during Covid. The delayed testing for the so many with yet to have diagnosis that did and will ultimately end these people’s lives earlier than would have pre-pandemic. And the list goes on and on.
I know what I write of is merely touching on the tip of the icebergs as so many in the world have suffered losses – loss of lives, sickness, and financial draining. These devastations in all our lives in some way or another have become the rude awakenings for us, and worse for many more.
Realizations. This pandemic gave us all a time for reflection and reckoning, a look around, and insight as to who’s caring about us? I know I’ve certainly had startling revelations myself after losing my husband seven months ago and discovering that my own family (save for two) doesn’t have the time of day for me, as well as discovering that my husband’s family were just that – my husband’s family. This rude awakening for me just brought me back to Maya Angelou’s famous quote: “When people show you who they are, believe them.”
What I’ve learned during this pandemic: Keep your circles small and tight. It’s all about the quality of the people in our lives, not the quantity. And friends are the family we choose.
If anyone here would like to share some of your own awakenings and discoveries you’ve had through these trying times, please feel free to share.
Let us all pray for a better year globally, the sick to heal, the virus to die, and peace, love, and brotherhood to return to mankind.
Below are links to just a few articles on how the pandemic has wreaked havoc on many relationships:
BBC – Spikes in Break ups and Divorces
This article was originally posted on Sally Cronin’s Smorgasbord Blog Magazine