I don’t know about you, but I am tired of listening and reading about Covid-19, writes Margaret McGee.
We all know it is the main news topic now for several weeks in this country, but in the background for a number of months now.
I personally have decided to tune out from the radio, of which I was an avid listener and often contributor.
Many times, I have been speaking on our local radio station, Ocean FM in Sligo, on the west coast of Ireland, and I often text or email the Tubridy and Sean O’ Rourke radio shows.
As a farmer’s daughter and a woman who now works in agricultural business, i.e. my local mart. I have many memories of my life growing up in this area.
We had a mixed small farm, with cattle, sheep and horses. On these lovely spring nights, my sisters and I could have been observed tiptoeing outside through the yard at night, clad only in our nightdress or pyjamas, and wellies to check on a perspective mother to be, whether it was a Shorthorn cow due to calve, or the next mare due to foal.
We thought nothing of it at the time, it was just part of life. The mares were very likely to foal at night-time, in the peace of the night or near dawn and there was nothing like it, seeing new life being brought into the world.
To see a new gangly legged foal, sleek and long-limbed delivered and within minutes, those lanky legs were shakily finding the earth beneath them and allowing that new arrival to feed for the first time.
I remember these moments so clearly, and the sort of joy that came with them. Watching the relief and happiness on my dad’s face, a new birth, and mother and baby doing well, rewarded with a warm bran mash.
Holding onto good memories
During the times we are living now, I often think of little moments like those, and feel, that in bad times, we have to hold on to good memories, living in the knowledge, that this too will pass.
My children, two teenagers and an adult, will, of course, have their own memories of this time that we are living in now.
We don’t live on a farm, but they will have their own memories of home-baking, schools closed before their state exams, restrictions of movement and the family unit being together unusually.
They would think of my night-time trips in my nightie as highly comical, but we just had different experiences of growing up.
Life is kind of in suspended animation at the minute, for a lot of us. I am off work, for now. My husband, who usually works away from home all week, is now working from home, and thankfully able to do so.
Farmers are able to carry on in most ways doing their usual tasks, but, of course, being impacted by the restrictions on marts and factories.
We all want life to get back to normal and it will. Schools, shops and workplaces will reopen, and we will be able to do what we do best in this country, chat and spend time together with those we love.
It is hard being separated from elderly relatives, my mother and mother-in-law included. I am looking forward to celebrating a belated 90th birthday in a very special way, when the danger has passed.
Take care and use the phone, call friends and chat on the phone. Keep in touch, it’s what we do!!