Welcome to our global #FarFromHome series: reflections on covid-19 lockdown from people who are are far from their family and home-country. We hope this brings comfort and reassurance. We chat to Heather, from South Africa, who lives in the UK.
What keeps you motivated during lock-down That this time is a gift – it is a time to pause and do the things you have not had time to do. It can be a time to reflect and heal.
Has anything brought you hope or inspiration at this time? I have been inspired by way that the planet is healing when there are no humans around, and the community spirit that this crisis has brought to the surface.
What other emotions has this period brought for you? The lockdown has brought me fear – of staring death in the face. And the realisation that I have not prepared for death. I also fear the inability to help if family get sick. I don’t know if I would be able to get there or say goodbye.
What in your life history has made you better able to deal with this situation? I know that I am strong. I know that I am brave and that I can survive.
What good qualities has lockdown brought out in you? During lockdown, I have learnt about my ability to be a good friend.
What characteristics of yourself have you relied on to get through lockdown? The ability to be alone and happy and my ability to adapt to new situations.
Has this experience changed your interaction with your neighbours or community? Yes, I’ve really been impressed with the way the community have rallied. For example, neighbours are giving each other free masks.
What would be your advice to those people facing loneliness at this time? If you are lonely right now, do something that will give you another perspective, something to lift you out of yourself.
Is there any other message you would like to send to other people who are living far from their original birthplace during this time? Social media and online chat spaces have brought us much closer than we may have been before Coronavirus in many instances. Tap into this phenomenon and make the most of this new age.