Here we go with week 12 of The Weekly Balance! For those of you who follow this series, I really do hope you’re enjoying the posts. I definitely find it therapeutic to sit down each week and reflect by writing to you guys here, that’s for sure!
What went on in my doctor life…
Well, as I’m sure the vast majority of you are aware, my day job as a public health doctor is entirely focused on the COVID-19 pandemic right now. We have been preparing for and working on our response to COVID-19 since the start of 2020, and it’s a little bit mind-blowing to think that it’s been 12 weeks of working on it. It has evolved so much during that time – and here we are with a pandemic on our hands. I can’t stress enough how important it is for us all to make the very best effort that we can to protect ourselves and our loved ones from this virus and the illness it causes. I spoke in more detail last week in my weekly balance article about it, but here are the key steps (for those in Ireland) our Chief Medical Officer Dr. Tony Holohan has recommended:
Please stay up to date on COVID19 via your local health authority. I’ll direct you to the following websites below:
- The Irish Health Service Executive (https://www2.hse.ie/coronavirus/)
- The Health Protection Surveillance Centre (https://www.hpsc.ie/)
- The World Health Organisation (https://www.who.int/)
- The European Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (https://www.ecdc.europa.eu/en/home)
- Public Health England (https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/public-health-england)
- NHS (https://www.nhs.uk/)
- The Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (https://www.cdc.gov/)
We all have a personal responsibility to each other and to our country to do this right. To get this right. To save as many lives as we can. The next 7 days in Ireland especially are critical. What we do, what YOU do, every single day matters. I share more regular updates on my Instagram on this pandemic – you can find that here.
What I’m thinking about…
How much life has completely and utterly changed for us all in the last few weeks. In Ireland, schools and colleges are closed, we have all been advised regarding social distancing and reducing our social interactions, many are working from home, many others are restricting their movements/in self-quarantine or self-isolating, and many shops, cafes, restaurants and all pubs are closed. It’s become hard to imagine life before COVID-19. I look at photos now from last year and think about how incredible it was to be able to just visit family, see my Nana, go for a coffee with a friend, go to a gym or yoga class – the small things. I can’t say I personally took them for granted, but I’m definitely acutely aware these days of how much joy we can take in the simple pleasures life gives us.
Now, for me, I try to focus on the silver lining to every day. Work is very challenging a the moment and will continue to be for some time. So, I’ve gotta find ways to cope, and manage that stress, inside and outside of the day job. What I’m finding helpful is picking little bits of positivity I can fill my day with – a video call with my family and my friends, a cup of coffee, laughter, sleep, movement, cooking a tasty meal at home or baking, reading a good book, writing – these are all the things that feed my soul, and can be done while sticking to current measures recommended. I’d urge you all to find those little daily joys, because we all need a bit of light in our day right now. I recently shared an Instagram post about fun activities you can do while social distancing – check them out on my Instagram!
What I’m reading…
I finished The Beekeeper of Aleppo by Christy Lefteri last week and LOVED it! In case you haven’t read it, it is a fiction novel telling the story of Nuri and Afra, a beekeeper and an artist, who are forced to flee their life in Aleppo, Syria due to war and conflict. This journey takes them through Turkey and Greece to the UK, and along the way are many challenges endured, loss, danger and darkness. What keeps them going is the thought of friendship waiting in the UK and…hope. I think this was the most beautifully written book I’ve ever read. Genuinely. I looked forward to it every single night and really took my time with it because I didn’t want it to end. It opened my eyes too because although a fiction novel it is based on the stories of real life experiences and journeys like that taken by Nuri and Afra. Put it at the top of your list!
I’ve just started Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides (literally last night) and I’m hooked already. Definitely one I’ll be sharing a review on too! As always, let me know what you’re reading in the comments below!
What I’m listening to…
Excellent news gang – Brene Brown launched her FIRST Podcast episode this week! Her Podcast is called Unlocking Us (what a name) and the first episode is all about our first time with new things – which includes coping during a pandemic. It’s an awesome listen and I’d really recommend giving it a go. I’m also really enjoying The Daily Podcast which is part of The New York Times. Currently most episodes focus on COVID-19 and different aspects of the pandemic, so give it a listen if you’re interested but if you want a break from that kinda content, skip it for now!
Recipe of the week
Last weekend I created a delicious new recipe – a Chili Bean Pasta Bake! It’s very handy as a dinner recipe that packs extra portions, but also ideal for lunchboxes too! You can find it on my blog here.
Finally, Happy Mother’s Day to you all! I know this isn’t how we all would have planned to spend Mother’s Day, but I know when the worst of this pandemic is past us, we will all celebrate our mother’s present, past and future properly.
Catch you next weekend guys – for more weekly balance.
Ciara 🙂 x