BBC correspondent Emmanuel Igunza has spoken out about how tough 2021 was for his mental health.
Tweeting about it in a thread that has elicited a lot of reactions, Emmanuel wrote,
“THE LAST 1 YEAR HAS BEEN A TERRIBLE ONE FOR ME – LIKE MOST PEOPLE.. I HAD TO DEAL WITH COVID 19 RELATED ANXIETY PLUS WORK PLACE BULLYING AND DILAPIDATING DEPRESSION THAT LITERALLY HIJACKED MY SOUL.”
“FOR DAYS I LITERALLY COULDN’T FUNCTION. HAD TO DRAG MYSELF THROUGH THE DAY – WITH A FAKE SMILE AND ALL. I BASICALLY SWITCHED OFF FROM NEWS- IT WAS TO DEPRESSING, SCARY.”
He continued, “I have always enjoyed traveling but seeing people suffering and dying with Covid 19 made me stay indoors for days.. weeks.. I was so scared. Then a scare I had contracted Coronavirus made me even more paranoid.
HAVING TO DEAL WITH ANXIETY AND AGORAPHOBIA IN THE TIMES OF COVID 19 IS A WHOLE NEW LEVEL. SO I RETREATED FROM EVERYDAY LIFE, SOCIAL MEDIA AND FOUND SOLACE HIDING IN MY VILLAGE.”
Emmanuel narrated how “Last December, after few days of sleepless nights, I woke up in the middle of the night with a strong urge to see my maternal grandma. I took the 6 hour long drive with my son.”
He explained how the visit went.
“WE SAW HER… WEAK IN BED.. SHE TRIED REACHING OUT TO US TO HOLD HANDS.. WE STAYED BACK… IT WAS THE FIRST TIME MY SON WAS SEEING HER.. AND THE LAST. SHE BREATHED HER LAST YESTERDAY OF OLD AGE.”
“THROUGHOUT THIS YEAR.. I’VE LEARNT THERE PEOPLE WHO JUST TALK ABOUT MENTAL HEALTH AND COVID TO TICK OFF THE BOXES… N THERE ARE PEOPLE WHO KNOW HOW INSANE THESE TIMES ARE FOR PEOPLE WITH MENTAL ILLNESSES. BE NICE TO EACH OTHER.. IT REALLY DOESN’T TAKE MUCH.”