Today's Update: Thursday, March 18

March 18, 2021

Dear Student Life Team, There has been a great deal of attention paid to how our lives changed one year ago because of COVID. It has been a traumatic experience, and one that brings different reactions for all of us. 

Noting this milestone means restlessness and fear can bubble up. You might also be experiencing anxiety, anger, fear, grief, frustration or sadness.   

It can be very alarming to have very strong reactions at the one-year mark. Student Life Counseling and Consultation Service tells us that strong reactions are very normal and to be expected.  

You might find yourself having grief surges, where an unexpected trigger like a smell or a sound sends a wave of feelings over you. Sometimes people think this means that they will never be over a traumatic experience, but this is not the case. These reactions will become less frequent and less alarming over time.  

CCS has some thoughts on what helps us to move on: 

  • Honor your emotional response. Accept what you are feeling as a valid reaction.  

  • Recognize, acknowledge and pay attention to feelings and reactions that surface… before, during and after the one-year mark. 

  • Notice where you are today, versus immediately after the pandemic began. 

We all experience and express grief individually. CCS suggests reflecting on your emotional reactions to the one-year later reminders, and assessing whether your feelings have changed. Has anything surprised you, in a good way, about yourself or others? Do you have any hopes or fears for how you personally, or we as a group, move into the next year?  

Talking about remembrance and commemoration at the one-year mark enables us to come together, feel all of the feelings and move forward together. 

Being able to reflect on the past year can go a long way toward healing. It’s a good time to recognize the resilience, courage and stamina that has been required of you over the past year, and move into our Scarlet and Great future.  

Melissa