When word was spreading that coronavirus may happen and schools might close, I was still very much living in a fog of grief. I lost my husband 12 months ago after caring for him for 10 years. He was 41.
I had got used to living day to/by day and by that I mean just getting the shopping I needed for that day, ordering from Amazon for the next day. My biggest decisions were what to wear two mornings a week for my part-time job. Obviously I was functioning as a person and a mother but no one really expected much from me and my friends got used to me cancelling plans. My family still delivered my favourite meals twice a week. I was longing for a change but didn’t know how to start again. My mum lives in Ireland so lockdown for her happened two weeks before us. She would ring me every day almost begging me to to get prepared but I think because I had spent so long having to be prepared and double prepared since I lost my husband, I became almost rebellious with being prepared and had just been free-styling.
For the first time in a year, I went to a supermarket and I bought a whole month’s worth of essentials, mainly to shut her up. I’m so glad I did that! The days before the official lockdown were so crazy! I had to get my son home from university as it had closed, make sure my dad had all his shopping and medications and my mother-in-law into a home for respite as she was struggling. All of a sudden I had to take part again and remember things and organise stuff and just like that I started to feel like the fog was lifting slightly, I was busy I was needed and I had a job to do.
In the weeks that have followed, my two children (who are 8 and20) and I have baked, cleaned, danced, sang, walked, talked, cried, planned and trained our dogs but most importantly got to know each other again. Lots of these things have not been possible for a long time. I’ve not been the best textbook teacher and some days we haven’t got dressed but I have realised I’m ready to take part in life again and as soon as it is safe to do so hug everyone I’m great full for and never again will I turn down a social event and I can not wait to return to work full time.
My heart is heavy for the families losing loved ones before their time and I’ve always been so great full for our NHS and all the other front line angels risking their own health to keep the country going.