When you know your work is not worthless
March 25, 2020
During this time of isolation, it has been really hard to fight depression, especially when my life has been about helping veterans and their families. My husband and I are both over 60 and have health problems. Being out with people is dangerous for me, but more so for him. It is also dangerous for all others. Knowing that isolation is very hard on veterans, especially when they have PTSD, rips at my soul!
I just put up a video for the leaders in Point Man International Ministries, knowing that if I am going through all of this, they must be too. Sharing pain is often healing for us and gives comfort to others going through the same thing. Knowing you are not alone is empowering!
None of us can stand very long on our own. Sure, we gain strength from our faith and reliance on God, but we gain more by following our own advice. We tell veterans to share their pain with others and support each other. We need to follow that same advice but all too often, we fear letting others know just how human we are. We fear asking for help because we are supposed to be full of the Holy Spirit and faith enough to not be afraid of anything. Still not sure how we got that idea or the notion that we are any better than the people were have dedicated our lives to helping, but we did.
We are just as human as everyone else and most of us are not ashamed to admit that. Even Jesus was not afraid to ask for help, yet we have a problem with that?
After I recorded this video I was thinking about all the others who are healers and protectors in isolation right now because they were exposed to COVID-19 on the job, or prevented from doing their work for other reasons. It hits us even harder because our mission on this earth is to help other people. When we cannot do it, it crushes our soul.
Please keep in mind that right now, the best thing we can do is help each other get through this time so that we will be there, rested and restored to help all the others who will need us, when we get back to whatever normal is again.
Not being able to work with other veterans is hard during this time of isolation for any of us. Take comfort knowing you are not alone, just as we give comfort to others with that same message. My heart and prayer are with all of you.
UPDATE from Hong Kong
Steven Chau: Who will heal the healers? The psychological aftermath of covid-19
On top of these stressors, healthcare workers tend to be more reluctant to seek help for mental health problems due to worries about confidentiality, stigma, and the fear of losing their medical licenses. A study on disaster preparedness in Hong Kong conducted in 2015 found that 75% of healthcare workers were unlikely to seek help from mental health professionals for psychological distress secondary to their handling of a disaster. It is therefore critical to plan stringent, proactive psychological support measures early on to facilitate distressed workers in seeking help and to prevent unintended secondary injury being inflicted upon them. The prevention of further psychological harm should be a major consideration in any post-pandemic policies that follow and which are related to healthcare workers.