Better, Not Bitter: Intentional Responses to the COVID-19 Pandemic

Portrait of William Parham, Professor of Counseling & Interim Associate Dean of Faculty in the School of Education
William D. Parham, Ph.D., ABPP

By William Parham, Professor of Counseling & Interim Associate Dean of Faculty in the School of Education

It has been said that life is not about waiting for the storm to pass; it’s about learning how to dance in the rain. The COVID-19 pandemic has ushered in an off-the-radar and unprecedented storm of uncertainty that has fast become an emotional tsunami requiring instant and life-altering changes. Further, the swirl of these dramatic changes has yet to unfold fully. The lived experiences of each member of our LMU community will never be the same.

Following the guidelines of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), and other recognized public health entities, President Snyder and Provost Poon have charted a course for us to follow as we navigate ourselves to shores of a new tomorrow. Like most journeys, opportunities are disguised as challenges. Hidden in the challenges in this still unfolding journey are opportunities to discover more about ourselves and how we manage our emotional health and wellbeing. An overall look at the emotional seascape we are likely to encounter is provided herein. 

A series of four narratives exploring the unique experiences and challenges faculty, students, staff and administrators are likely to encounter will be offered for consideration during the upcoming weeks. One to two brief narratives about re-entry into ‘normal life post-COVID-19 and the emotional readjustment challenges likely to be experienced during that journey will also be highlighted. For now, let’s start our journey of exploration asking the following self-reflective question: Relative to this new reality, what can I do today that is better than I did yesterday, knowing that it won’t be as good as what I will accomplish tomorrow?