One whole year

One whole year of masks, hand washing, sanitising and keeping distant. 

One whole year of it being the main topic of conversation and News. Government updates delivered in grave tones, giving us directives, warnings and the heart wrenching death toll.

A year in which we had to search out essentials in supermarkets. Empty shelves that once held toilet rolls, anti bacterial wipes and other necessities that we took for granted. 
Then it became too overwhelming and dangerous to go to shop - so the shop-on-line regime began, including sanitising the goods once delivered before putting away. 

One whole year of living in fear. 
Second guessing that dry throat, sniffle, headache or cough being the onset of the virus. 

One whole year of going to bed praying that my precious family and friends would make it through the next day unscathed and untouched by the virus. Some fell victim, some recovered and a few have been lost forever.  

One whole year of feeling fragile, living on the edge, one minute calm resignation - the next minute panicked, desperate and fighting to control emotions. A year of being pushed to the limits. 

A year of confinement and loss of freedom. A precious year lost from a lifespan. 

A year in which I’ve
Cried with a friend while exchanging Christmas gifts at the gate. 
Cried with many friends (remotely)
because we cannot see our grandchildren, children and each other. 
Had middle of the night texting conversations and phone calls from others as desperate and despairing. They didn’t wake me - because I couldn’t sleep anyway 

A year of realisation of who and what is important, a giant shift in priorities. 

A year at the end of which there is no end, just hope and some optimism scraped up from the very depths of my being because the future would be too grim without light at the end of the tunnel. 

But ................

A year to appreciate the very small things, like hugs, hair cuts and coffee out. 

but most of all to appreciate the love received and returned.


Muriel Johns.