What is the effect of corona and the lockdown on the mental state of children?
This pandemic has been a rollercoaster ride for all those who have lived it. For children, this has been something that neither they nor their parents had ever known. All spheres of their lives are affected. The major pillar of scaffolds in a child’s life include— his/her parents (or caregivers), immediate environment, school, the self, and social sphere.
Major instability in each of these has taken a huge toll on our children's mental health. There are rising concerns of temper tantrums, anxiety, existential queries, confusion and hopelessness, rendering them unable to figure a way out...
I was excited to go to school as our new session was going to start soon. But, but, but… just two weeks before it was about to reopen, we were banned from going outside.
LOCKDOWN—Yes! This is the word which has a lot of power. Are you thinking that I am praising it? No, never. This innocent word locked us inside our homes for months and months and drove, we the students, online with no end in sight.
Attending a government school in a remote village, all my students required greater attention. They have a rural background and pursue farming apart from studies. In the beginning, I contacted three of my 8th-class students through video calls on WhatsApp. Pawan, Adarsh and Bhavesh almost broke down over the call when they saw me live after months. Then, I made several WhatsApp groups like ‘Science 6th’, ‘Science 10th’, etc. and contacted them daily.
When a free bird is trapped in a cage, it writhes in pain and pines. My uncle had a parrot who used to roam around the house even though it had a cage to live in. That parrot is the representation of our lives before the pandemic. We used to live in our houses just the same but we had freedom too. However, during these two years, it feels as if our gates are shut with a huge lock called‘Covid-19’.
Thanks to the trade and imperial ventures of humans, these disease-causing organisms could cross regional boundaries and spread infection.
Humans are really strange. They love giving awkward names to other living beings. For example, I am called a 'virus'. In Latin, it means poison or poisonous liquid. Well, humans do seem to enjoy giving names carrying negative connotations. My other name, 'pathogen', is not encouraging either. So, what is a pathogen? If you Google it, you will get the following explanation: 'Pathos' is the Greek word for disease and genes means 'born of'.