It is now more than a month since our region joined Greater Sydney, and surrounding areas such as the Blue Mountains and Wollongong, in lockdown.
I have to say that my heart goes out to our city neighbours who have been confined by COVID restrictions for more than three months. Right now a month is feeling like an eternity.
I also want to give a call out to those separated from their nearest and dearest because of these restrictions. I know how you feel with two daughters confined by the city lockdown since it began.
Almost daily phone calls, FaceTime catch ups and special gifts sent their way from time to time have helped me maintain a sense of connection and somewhat satiated my need to be motherly. But it is not the same as having them burst through the front door for what used to be almost weekly visits.
I am fortunate my son lives nearby, but again the regular weekly habit of a roast dinner, or similar, with his parents has been put on hold. He works with my husband so at least I get to see him in person and blow him a kiss when he drops over to pick up equipment for work.
However, each day I count my blessings that my brood is safe, healthy, and coping relatively well with the current challenges of life.
I am grateful for this circumstance, but mindful that with the COVID pandemic situations can change in an instant. I am also mindful of the many people where the restrictions, and the virus itself, have been felt with great impact.
My heart also goes out to those who have lost loved ones during the pandemic either from the virus or other illness. In many cases, the chance to pay tribute to the life of that lost loved one has been played out in a very different way, via a video link, due to travel and number restrictions at a funeral. In fact, I don't know of a single person who has been unaffected by this rule. My own family has faced this situation on several occasions.
I remind myself that the memory of those passed loved ones, the recollection of better times - the fun, the laughs, the lessons learned from family elders are invaluable. The COVID virus cannot take those things away.
Again I count my blessings.
But as I do so I also consider ways in which I can be a blessing to others. A phone call, a gift box, a meal delivery to someone on their own. I note that what may seem like a small gesture to me, could be a saviour to someone else.
With this newsletter I encourage everyone to count their blessings through these challenging times. I also encourage people to be a blessing to others.
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