Everywhere I look or listen these days, there is the word “resilience.” According to the American Psychological Association, resilience is the process of adapting well in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats, or significant sources of stress. During this pandemic, it seems to mean the ability of a person to manage and do well despite restrictions and isolation.
Easier said than done! In my novel, A Wife in Bangkok, the protagonist Crystal is cut off from her friends and family members by distance and the extremely limited means of international communication in the 1970s, is betrayed by her husband, and loses the one activity that made her feel useful and productive. She was profoundly lonely and stressed. Crystal needed professional help to find her way after all that happened to her, and she greatly benefitted from that help. At the end of the novel, she indeed found resilience and was able to resume a good life in Bangkok (no spoilers on how and what she did).
The message is that not everyone can find resilience on their own. Some situations are just too difficult to overcome by sheer will. There is no shame in that. Some of us have enough of a support system – a spouse, a congregation or social group – to help us get through this pandemic with its feelings of fear and loneliness. Whether to your support system or to a professional, don’t hesitate to reach out for help to find resilience.