Many thanks to Barb Krueger for sharing this article about grieving from the Harvard Business Review. It is an interview with David Kessler, who is the world’s foremost expert on grief, and it is specifically about our collective grief about the corona virus. His website about grief is rich with resources and suggestions.
I found the interview extremely comforting and helpful. I hope you will take some time to read it. We are all experiencing some level of grief right now because of the pandemic, and having the stages of it explained really helps make sense of what we are feeling. Kessler gives concrete suggestions of things to do to help yourself through some of the challenges. One of the things he suggests is to name your grief rather than trying to hide from it.
On top of all of our worries and grief about our loved ones, ourselves, and our world as a whole, librarians have the added grief of feeling like the way we serve our public has been drastically affected for an indefinite period of time. One of the things that gives our work meaning–connecting directly with the people in our community–is changed significantly because of the need for physical distancing. We aren’t really able to serve people who don’t have access to the Internet except for making sure our wifi is available from our parking lots. But people who don’t have a device or who don’t have the skills to access the online resources–it is hard to figure out how to serve them, especially right now. How can we even let them know about the resources we might be able to provide, if we figure out ways to serve those without Internet access? Added to this is uncertainty about the future, worrying about what affect this will ultimately have on our budgets and our ability to serve people in the future, even after the danger is abated and we can re-open.
Do yourself a favor and read the article! I hope it helps you make sense of what you are experiencing and gives you some tools to manage, as it did for me.