Don’t Feel Ashamed Of Missing The Way Life Was Before The Pandemic

Reminiscing about the good days — whatever that means to you — is all part of the process.


Lark Morrigan

3 years ago | 4 min read

Based on personal observations, it seems like people get shamed a lot for how they deal with the pandemic. Especially when they are not taking it well.

It’s one thing to judge someone who refuses to wear a mask, infects people at public places, and thinks coronavirus is a hoax.

But it’s an entirely different matter to judge someone who does obey health and safety protocol while still expressing discontent with the way things are now — economic depression, loneliness, greater health risks, exacerbation of cultural and socioeconomic inequality, and having their future plans drastically change in the blink of an eye.

It’s unproductive to ridicule the way different people grieve — a radical change in lifestyle is not easy to process and even though it’s been five months since the start of quarantine, some people take longer to adjust than others.

Some people have a hard time coping with how the pandemic has brought greater unrest and uncertainty. And it’s valid for them to not feel happy about it for a long time.

But it’s not just in major changes with society as a whole. It’s also in the little things that we often took for granted — sitting in a coffee shop for a change of ambiance, going to the library, having more selections at the grocery store, visiting friends and family whenever you feel like it, going on road trips, booking a flight without thinking about travel restrictions, treating yourself to a nice meal, going on a movie date, having a nice picnic in the park, etc.

Reminiscing about the good days — whatever that means to you — is all part of the process.

You may know it’s not productive and that you should be working towards doing whatever you can to adapt to these precarious times, which is ultimately all you can do.

But it’s not healthy to repress your feelings or pretend that depression on a global scale does not affect you at all.

Allow yourself to mourn the loss of a future you planned before the pandemic changed it all.

Allow yourself to mourn the loss of what used to be your normal.

Allow yourself to miss everything good about your old life.

Allow yourself to not feel happy for a while — grieve as much as you need to and stop feeling ashamed for doing it more slowly than others.

Recently, I’ve honestly become more depressed about being in quarantine, especially since I see it happening over the course of the next six months — possibly longer.

While I know that the thought, “If there were no quarantine, I’d do this, this, and that…” isn’t productive, I still think about what I would’ve liked to do if I weren’t in quarantine.

I’m still wearing a mask when I go anywhere and staying indoors as much as I can. I didn’t have much of an active social life outside the home before the pandemic, so staying indoors isn’t such a huge deal.

But even as an isolated introvert, I realize that I do miss going to places and I admittedly have cabin fever.

I miss going to the beach. If there were no quarantine, I would’ve gone on my first solo trip to the beach and spend that time reflecting on my life and use that vacation as some sort of short writing retreat.

I miss going to the library. Now I have to borrow eBooks from the library or order more books online. But I miss perusing the shelves of the public library and grabbing a book that intrigues me without knowing anything about it beforehand.

I miss bringing my laptop to the coffee shop and sitting there for hours.

I miss swimming in the pool. I miss going to the water park. I miss getting frozen yogurt.

I miss going to clothing shops and spending way less than what I’d pay for when ordering online.

I miss the freedom of getting into the car and driving to any place I want to just to clear my head and have a change in scenery.

Life will never be the same and your feelings about that are valid.

Maybe you can’t see hope or a light at the end of all this. You’re allowed to feel that way.

Maybe you feel restricted and afraid of what the future will bring because of how the world is facing a collective depression. Don’t let anyone shame you for feeling angry and sad about it.

The loss of life as you knew it is not easy to cope with and rather than forcing yourself to quickly move on when you are not yet done processing your feelings, let yourself feel what you really feel and reflect on good memories that have kept you going.

Because your grieving process is your own, as it should be. And nobody can judge you on how you’re currently feeling about a life that can no longer be what you hoped for.


Created by

Lark Morrigan

Poet and writer.







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