The Pandemic Letters is a series of reflections by Psychologist Marius Presterud. In the letters he delves on the deeper meanings of COVID-19, its impact on societal health and practical consequences for health personnel.
We give our pets name, so why not also give our mood-boosting plants personal names? And if plants that are given some extra warmth and care thrive the best, what would happen if you named a plant after yourself?
In a recent conversation with a colleague where we were talking about trust, forgiveness and other things therapists like to talk about, out of my mouth came a sentence that went something like: “Cultivating awe and respect for nature – and then coming to understand that I was part of the same nature which I so love – has allowed me to finally feel at home in my life”.
Since COVID, therapists of all types have taken their practices online and while many might feel it’s less than perfect, some are discovering that this major change in context and format has the potential to bring about new vantage points and considerations.
Do you feel uncomfortable as lockdown is being lifted? Do you sometimes become upset from other people’s happiness as they roam the outdoors? Does your mood fluctuate, and have you even had panic attacks, accompanied with trembling, sweating, hot flashes, and shortness of breath? If these symptoms have recently become familiar to you, maybe you are experiencing a bout of “re-entry anxiety”.
I’ve wanted to speak with Amalie Vatne Brean since forever. Not only is she a warm and smart person I used to study with, she’s also a private practicing psychologist specialised in some of my favourite topics: motherhood and the excruciating loneliness, shame and anxiety that oftentimes follow the responsibilities of parenthood.
You know the saying that distance makes the heart grow fonder? I never really believed in that growing up. I thought if I love someone then I would want to be with that person. However, every time we would spend long periods together, we would end up arguing.
My soon-to-be 4 year old daughter has started counting her grandparents’ wrinkles and exploring how the amount might relate to death. And it’s not just her who has an increased interest in mortality. For many people, life’s end feels more relevant to contemplate due to the pandemic. So why not attend a death cafe?
One of the words we often come across during these Corona times is vulnerability. Corona is most dangerous to those who are vulnerable, it is said. This category entails primarily the elderly and the immunosuppressed, but also those who, due to a lower socioeconomic status, aren’t receiving proper healthcare.