This night one year ago I had gone to the movies to see Frozen 2 with my partner, we had recently been to Melbourne for Christmas, on the way back there were fires forming and we did see smoke. Our city had had a layer of smoke surrounding it for some time now but nothing would prepare me for that night or the year to come.
I could smell something in the cinemas and I knew it was smoke, by the end of the movie there was smoke all through the room, we left and went to the parking machine, there was smoke throughout the shopping centre, people were coughing and covering their face, they were rushing to pay their tickets and get out. When we left it was like nothing I had ever seen, yes by now we were used to hazardous air, we were used to not being able to see long distances, we were used to the smell of smoke, the stinging eyes but this was different, apocalyptic is the only word that comes to mind. When I got to my car it had a layer of ash on it, it had rained ash. As I was driving it was so hard to see, it was like something out of a movie set in some bleak dystopian movie. I remember feeling upset and panicky on the way home, I was worried about my cats and the future. The next month or so was much of the same, we couldn't go out, I had a constant migraine. I felt depressed and anxious and I was hurting for everyone who had lost so much. The world was behind us and rallied together with support. When I could see fires on the mountain in the distance it became even more real. I felt anger and I just wanted it the end.
During this time there was also a severe hailstone that destroyed countless cars. My city had become a disaster zone with there being signs everywhere of what had happened. Cars that looked like they had been shot, damaged buildings and people just devastated.
Eventually it ended, we cout go outside and were free. But then it happened, COVID hit, we were now surrounded by empty super market shelves, fear and lockdowns. Again we were stuck inside, but at least we could now breathe. Time went on and at times it got worse, but we were lucky here. It did give me sort of a guilt knowing worldwide how much suffering it caused.
A year ago, COVID was new, it was something I lightly talked about over Christmas, a year ago we had fires, dust storms, terrible hail.
Now COVID is part of everyday conversation, there is more water in the areas near me, I still see cars that were damaged by the hail and it's a reminder to take nature seriously.
I wonder what I'll say in one year from now when I reflect back on 2021, I can only hope it's better. I can only hope my mental health doesn't decline as much as it did the last year. It was around October last year that I was triggered (scene on TV) and then with everything that happened I never really got better.
#Anxiety #Depression #MentalHealth #ObsessiveCompulsiveDisorder #NewYears #2021 #2020