The coronavirus pandemic ongoing throughout the world had shocked millions of people from the beginning and continues to terrorize their minds for a year now. The effects of this pandemic had manifested in almost every category of our life—from our environment, our relationships, and most of all, is towards ourselves. The unexpected change in our surroundings may have impacted our personal lives more than we ever notice. Our physical, emotional, and mental health are changing as time passes by. Some people are more prone to respiratory ailments due to the lack of interaction outside, and some people had developed mental illnesses. The current situation had made people shut themselves at home, alone with their own thoughts. This sudden isolation may have caused them to develop habits that they didn’t have before or even a perspective that limits them to see things more lightly.
Many people had a problem with being alone; they abhor it. The most common reason is that it makes them face their own thoughts and fears. Sudden isolation from the society which the pandemic had forced everyone to do had caused everyone to backtracked with their lives. This is almost a daily battle for patients in mental institutions, labelled with a stigma that separates them from the world. Mental health had been a touchy subject on this pandemic because of the stigma that goes along with it. A stigma that we must end for people to be more open about it: having mental illnesses is typical, given the things that happen in a person’s life. It is not a product of imagination, genetics, nor addiction, but an actual illness that patients battle every day of their lives. This led people to start a movement for others to be enlightened about the topic, especially in the middle of the pandemic.
Having a mental illness amidst the situation, Lisa Hale wrote Aqua Maddas, a book that sheds light upon the esoteric subject. The book’s main character is a genderless sea creature confined in a sanatorium under the sea, intending to save his realm. The book delves into climate change, human nature, and mental illness which would be a good read for anyone—be it a child or a person wiling his time. The peculiar tale of Aqua Maddas would surely interest readers, bringing them along with the protagonist’s adventure and teaching them some aspects of mental health, giving them insights about what it really is. A recommendable novel for everyone who wants to lift their minds from the stress that the pandemic brings, Lisa Hale had made sure that this book would capture everyone’s hearts and make her advocacy come true.
The stigma with mental illnesses needs to stop. As the topic is still prone to misinformation, proper education and awareness should be given to everyone—especially students—to understand that such an illness exists. If this stigma is still intact with mental health, facilities, and proper treatment of people affected, this would be hard to get. Shedding light on a topic shrouded with darkness may be challenging, but everyone must know that people are fighting for it that hopefully would enlighten other people’s minds.