OPINION: Lockdown isn't easy but we must remain committed

Daily column by journalist Siobhán McNamara

Getting it right this week is crucial to our battle against Covid-19

Getting it right this week is crucial to our battle against Covid-19

After the first week of full lockdown in Donegal and no end in sight, people are feeling the strain. 

But with 158 people dead from Covid-19 in the Republic of Ireland,  this is certainly not the time for complacency. It is expected that the Covid-19 crisis will peak here around Easter Sunday, so it is absolutely crucial that we maintain a high level of vigilance over the next few weeks.

My thoughts are very much with our young people at the moment. For teenagers, time spent with friends is vital at this time in their lives, so not being able to do so is very difficult for them. But most are dealing with it well. 

I feel very much for students from the Abbey Vocational School (AVS) in Donegal Town - including my own daughter - who should be in Italy on their school tour now. No doubt there were many other schools due to travel this weekend too.

The tour abroad is one of the highlights of secondary school. To have it cancelled was a big disappointment but they have shown great maturity. It has hit them hard again this weekend when they were due to travel, and with everyone in lockdown, doing something else to take edge off their disappointment is not an option.

We will all have days and events in these challenging weeks that will be particularly tough for us. And not being able to spend time with family and friends makes it harder. It would be all too easy to think a quick cuppa at a safe distance would do no harm, or taking the kids out for a change of scenery just once would be fine. But we know we have come too far for all our cocooning, social isolating and other efforts to have been for nothing.

Complacency has been the downfall of many a well-laid plan, as anyone who has ever tried to lose weight, stop smoking or carry through on a major life change knows. 

Commitment on the other hand is our saving grace. 

Like so many things in life, it comes down to a simple choice. We can be part of the problem or we can be part of the solution. So let’s stick with it, hang in there and keep this curve as low as we possibly can.

Read next: Drawing With Don - the perfect tonic for these troubled times

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