Today I Want To Hear From You

Over the last few weeks I’ve been blogging about our experiences as a family during lockdown in Northern Ireland as the coronavirus pandemic sweeps across the world. I’ve been encouraged and heartened by the response these posts have received. I’ve felt a real sense of community on WordPress that has been lacking for some time. People have responded, engaged and reached out to one another. Which is what the written word is all about.

Today I’m handing the baton over to you. I want to hear about your experiences during this unprecedented crisis, be they good, bad or indifferent. It can be a couple of lines or a couple of paragraphs. Who knows, this seed may expand into a blog post or series of your own. The ball is in your court. Wherever you are and whatever you’re doing I hope you are keeping safe and well. Please adhere to your government’s guidelines and have a great day.

Published by Fractured Faith Blog

We are Stephen and Fionnuala and this is our story. We live in Northern Ireland, have been married for 17 years and have three kids - Adam, Hannah and Rebecca. We hope that our story will inspire and encourage others. We have walked a rocky road yet here we are today, together and stronger than ever. We are far from perfect and our faith has been battered and bruised. But an untested faith is a pointless faith. Just as a fractured faith is better than none at all. We hope you enjoy the blog.

37 thoughts on “Today I Want To Hear From You

  1. I live in rural fastness in West Cavan. In some ways, lockdown just means we don’t go off the reservation as often as we used to. We have an acre and a quarter. No trips to the public library or over the border to Northern Ireland. No trips to the recycling centre, so that is beginning to pile up in the shed. My husband has set the potatoes and I put in the onions. We have other beds all sowed. We are wary of frost and will tuck them up with every fleece throw we can find in the cupboard tonight.

    A young neighbour insists on doing the ‘gap week’ shopping for us (My husband just turned 70) to get things that we cannot get in the village shop. Dear Husband is not allowed togo into the village shop. At 63, I am in a lower risk group, but I stillI whisk around like a bandit and then have an elaborate santising routine when I get home. Which starts with stripping off ‘outside’ clothes and pegging them to air on the line. Shoes are left outside the door. I scrubbed down the stove’s new gas drum assiduously. I rejoiced when they had potting compost in stock again this week! That took some time to give three of them a good suds down. Then it took four websites before I could order seeds online because most were out of stock.

    I hand stitch face masks for us and the young neighbour who does our shopping. And now I am getting the hang of it, I am offering them to others. Last night, over the phone, my sister-in-law in Philly told me the website for a new improved face mask pattern. And that is another thing. I am speaking on the phone to all my USA resident siblings – one locked tight in Brooklyn Heights (sister-in-law has sent face masks for dog walking), Philadelphia and South Carolina. The last one is the worry, because social distancing is not being taken as seriously there as other places. We have never spoken as often as we do now. All my siblings are in that high risk group – aged 68,70, and 72. My sister has been a Type 1 diabetic for 50 years; she’s the one in South Carolina where they are playing a bit fast and loose with quarantine. If I dwell on that too much I feel a tight band vice around my chest.

    I pray more. Not in the rote ways that I learned as a child. From the heart. Starting with the thank yous, before getting on to the pleases. We have a holy well 2,500 steps up from our house. I go up there almost every day to exercise the dogs (and me.) Also, to exercise the spritual muscles, too.

    Also, given the dearth of new light fiction in the house, I am listening to audiobooks on YouTube. While I bake. I always did like to bake. Now I make cookies (biscuits) instead of cakes. More bang for your buck. They last longer. And my dear husband likes to have some dessert.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Hi Stephen,

    I’m from India and experiencing freshness in my life due to lock down since three weeks. Just before lock down we moved from city to our farm house with some essential stuff. Enjoying this period with family as we no need to rush to office in busy traffic, pollution and so on. Getting good time after work from home, to feel the nature, to see variety of birds around, to read nice books and to blog few topics! I’m getting opportunity to see farmers around and their hard work to grow crops, their life style, cooking food, etc.

    Following government guidelines which is helping us and lock down will be extended further to contain the spread.
    This is also time to pursue few things which were not possible earlier. Following your writings and good to know about you and your family. Look forward for better days ahead around the world!

    Thank you

    Liked by 2 people

  3. The spread in the Washington DC area is serious but no where as critical as in New York. Our stay-at-home order is not as strict as in some other places around the world, but quarantine rules are changing every day. We can still go to a lot of stores. I was surprised to see people start to wear face masks now. Then again, there are a lot of people still on the street. I think we are playing a bit loose here in our area as well, especially, they tried to go to the National Mall to see the cherry blossoms, or to the fish market in DC last weekend, or some many national parks around here, forcing the park services to block the roads to many of them.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. It’s been interesting. I didn’t think I’d notice that much. I tend to stay in – I isolate and avoid people for long stretches. So naturally, I thought this would be a dream come true. And it was. For a minute. And then I wanted toilet paper and flour and that was a no-go. And the store that sells crystals that I like to go to is closed. And I eat out a couple of times a week and that’s now done. I am more of the world than I thought. And there is the worry. Worry for my parents. Worry for my family. Worry about my friends. Worry that reactionary people and politicians will make this worse by their worship of the dollar. Strange times indeed.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I live in Denver Colorado. Because I work in infrastructure, I’m still working Monday to Friday most weeks. Today it’s snowing, so we’re staying home and away from the 20° temperatures. Yesterday I finished the first draft of my Novel, a book I’ve been writing for the past year. I’ll add this, I’m a recovering addict, and I’ve been sober for about 15 months. Interesting enough, the same weekend I finished my book, is also the same weekend I passed the test of not relapsing. My clean and sober life continues. For many others, possibly not doing as well. I suspect there are many out there who have not passed their test, their own personal test whatever it may be. It’s mostly for those individuals whom I pray for, the ones struggling to make good decisions for both themselves, and for their loved ones. Everything we survive prepares us for what’s next! ❤️

    Liked by 2 people

  6. It’s a mixed bag here – I’m not used to not having any “alone” time,because hubby is (thankfully) able to work from home. But that leads to insomnia to get some alone, which messes with my studies.
    Depending on where you go, maybe 25 – 40% are wearing masks. That’s terrifying, especially as the highest groups hit with the disease are in their 20s and 30s.
    Sadly, street racing is on the uptick – less traffic makes it so much more fun for those fools to go whipping out and about, and having far worse accidents as a result.
    So far, my friends and family are safe, or have had very mild cases. 2 friends had symptoms, but since they aren’t in a “danger” category, they were denied testing.
    We’ve got some things stockpiled, with the understanding that once this is done, there will likely be a donation to the food pantry. We’re lucky enough to have not only necessities but luxuries.
    Best of all love and good health out there – follow the WHO or smart people guidelines – don’t take the wooden nickels of “We need to get the country open by this date.” Diseases don’t work that way.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hello – Louisville Kentucky is so quiet these days, and the air appears much more fresh due to the reduction in air and land traffic. We only go out for necessities and are advised not to gather, even outdoors; my family enjoyed Easter dinner via Zoom – they usually come each Sunday and I happily cook (one of my therapies lol); I made the meal and dropped it on their doorsteps.this time it was OK to use devices at the dinner table :). The neighborhoods are full of people moving in all manner of modalities so walking has become less of a solitary endeavor as most folks smile or wave, many from their porches. Such a paradox, the beauty of Spring, folks all friendly and working in their yards but the bad news keeps coming. Lots of blessings to be thankful for.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I’m self quarantining in Hawaii. My parents are both over the age of 70, so I’m being as careful as possible not to get sick or bring the virus home. I was already self distancing due to depression for a long while before this, but I do feel just slightly more stifled. Now, instead of not wanting to go out when I’d want something, I feel like it’s my responsibility do everything I can to not.

    I’ve been wearing my p100 respirator (more filtration than N95) when I go out. I had it left over from my last job and I don’t think hospitals would take used supplies. I look like an idiot and wonder if people feel like I’m needlessly taking supplies from those who need them, but I think about my parents who have given me every opportunity possible.

    Wishing you the best out in Ireland and everyone else in our world

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lol I feel the same slight guilt about wearing my PPE – I spent 20 years in Radiology in an infectious disease environment; when we broke a sterile tray whatever wasn’t used I took home so I have quite a bit of professional now un-sterile product that my family and I can use when venturing out in public for necessities. The reality is, no one is really thinking about me. Stay well.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. In Kenya, it’s a slow climb of cases and deaths. Many businesses have closed. We also have a nightime curfrew. Unfortunately, there are some stubborn people who enjoy playing cat and mouse games with the authorities. Some even used an ambulance to go to a party during curfew hours. Others break social distancing and curfew rules, because they live from hand to mouth, and closing shop even for a day means no money to feed their families.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Hi Stephen. Good to hear that you and your family are doing okay! Things in Pennsylvania are touch and go. We seem to be on a 4-day downtrend of infections statewide, but we’re still a ways away from anything resembling a life we used to have. We’ve not had issues getting needed supplies and food, thankfully. We’re lucky to have online ordering and curbside pickup when we do have to venture out. I do have a trusted family-owned butcher shop around the corner that helps if there’s something the grocery can’t provide.

    Like everyone else, we’re spending our days at home. Our house hasn’t been this clean in years! I’ve returned to my family chef duties and cooking is something I enjoy, so it also adds some therapeutic quality to life currently. We’re about another week away from tending to the lawn and working around the house outside, things that I used to procrastinate about, but suddenly look forward to. Our habits have certainly changed over the past 6 weeks!

    Things seem to be getting better here in places, but we still have some work ahead with maintaining our proactive measures and following the advice of our health authorities. I don’t leave the house except for grocery trips, and even then I wear a mask and gloves. Our children are grown so it’s just my wife and I, but naturally we do keep in touch and they seem fine, which is a blessing. Getting outside to exercise and walk, or to work in the garden, is incredibly uplifting.

    Stay safe and continued well wishes for you and yours.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. It’s been nice to slow down and take a break.
    More flashback nightmares, more marital conflicts.
    More time to reboot or take it out.
    I admire our government and helping folks.

    Pull together. 🌻


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