Some Heroes Watch Star Wars

April 20 2020 Sarajane Kennedy 2nd Year

Over a month has passed since all schools in Ireland shut down. At first, I was delighted. I was so happy I was not going to have to get up at 7. I was happy because I wouldn’t have to put on my school uniform. I was happy I was not going to have to walk up or down St. Patrick’s Hill. I was so happy I was on a high the whole day. I couldn’t stop smiling.

Now over a month has passed, and by gosh, I wish I had some social interactions with people other than my mom, my dad and my 3 younger sisters.                          

Ireland has been affected majorly, but not as bad as some other countries such as Italy. All schools have shut down in the Republic and in the North of Ireland. The Republic is currently in self-isolation and we’ve all been asked to stay at home until May, but I think it will be extended until June. You are only allowed to leave the house for food and medicine. Anyone with underlying conditions or over the age of 70 have been asked to “cocoon”. This means that they are asked to stay at home and not leave the house for anything. I think Leo Varadkar and the minister for health have done a great job in keeping Ireland safe. They learned from other countries and acted on the spread of this disease quickly.

Lots of people have lost their jobs due to COVID-19, but my parents have not. My dad is a respiratory consultant and he is “up to 90” with work, at the moment. It’s the busiest I’ve ever seen him. My Dad in on a duty called “Covid duty”. Since my dad is a doctor who focuses on the lungs, he is currently treating patients with COVID-19 regularly. He wears special gear called PPE while treating these patients, such as a full body mask. Hygiene is essential in the 2 hospitals he works in. My dad is also currently helping an inventor from Tindle make an oxygen mask for ill patients out of a scuba-diving mask! He was also one of the people to design the national guidelines to decide who will get ICU beds in a hospital, which is very sad to think about because there is a shortage is ICU beds all over Ireland.

When he comes home after a very long day, my dad straight away has to go into the shower and uses a surgical scrub to remove any germs. He also keeps a good distance away from us at home, which kind of sucks. We usually cheer him up after his stressful day by watching Star Wars, since it’s his all-time favorite movie series since he was a child. I am so proud of him for all that he is doing.

My mom has been called to go back and work in the hospital. She worked part-time as a research nurse but is currently doing a course and taking care of us. She had to fill out this long application and call someone to tell her she can work and help out with COVID-19 patients. At the moment, she is trying to work from home.

I still FaceTime all my friends nearly every day and I am so grateful for technology during this isolation. My moms’ side of the family, the Brackens, did a massive online bingo game that my cousin set up on Zoom. It was so lovely to see all my aunties, uncles and cousins who I cannot visit at the moment because family means everything to me. I also FaceTime my grandparents who live in Roscommon to check in on them and to catch up.

I miss my friends so much, but again, like I said, I’m FaceTiming them every day and texting them to check in on them. We plan to have a big day out in town and go to the beach where my holiday home is once this all passes 😊. Also, my friend is throwing a big party for all my friend group at her house for a big get together once this is gone.

Speaking of big days out, my sisters’ confirmation was cancelled, which is bad I guess, but the good news is it’s now in June. Therefore, my mom says we are going to have a massive party with all my family in the summer. I’m really looking forward to it.

My family on FaceTime

Not only are all my school classes are online, I still get to FaceTime my piano teacher to do my weekly lesson. There is also a Performers Academy Google Classroom that’s compulsory to do for all students. Teachers put up fun things such as dance routines or songs to learn, so that you can be working on them. This is by far my favorite Google Classroom! I got to FaceTime one of my teachers from Performers Academy and she says she will be running summer dance classes. I cannot wait!

For rowing, I try (sometimes this does not go to plan!) to exercise daily to keep my health and fitness up so when I get back to rowing it won’t be hard to get back into the routine. Last week, the trainer set up a Pilates class to keep us fit and healthy, which I really enjoyed. I got to stay on Zoom after and chat to my friends.

I still try to stick to my routine for school and I try my best to revise, but it can be hard because I’m so used to my busy and active school routine before COVID-19.

A new skill I have developed is I have learned how to become an expert at Mario Kart on the Wii. My dad set it up in our games room during his spare time and now me and my sisters can hang out and compete seriously against each other on the Wii. I also learned how to play table- tennis because I have a table in my games room.

I hope everyone is staying safe and isolating during these confusing times. Remember this will all pass for all of us and when it does, I think we will all be better and stronger people.

My sisters enjoying the sunset at my house during COVID-19