Interviews carried out by a talented young writer from Liskeard are giving an insight into lockdown life.
Maisie Barker, nine, decided to do a home learning project on the effects of the coronavirus restrictions on people’s lives and wellbeing.
After coming up with some questions and with a little assistance from her mum Rachael, Maisie found several people willing to be interviewed on social media, including a teaching assistant, a home support worker, a businesswoman and an older couple who have been shielding at home since before the lockdown began.
Her questions included: ’How have you been feeling during the coronavirus pandemic, and what have you learned from the experience so far? What have you been doing to keep busy? What are your first plans for after lockdown is lifted? Has the pandemic affected your work? Has it affected your mental health, or anyone else in your household? How has the lockdown affected your relationships? What has helped you to get through so far?
Here’s what Maisie heard from Georgia, a registered veterinary nurse and part-time farmer from Liskeard.
The coronavirus pandemic has caused a lot of stress, so far from the whole experience I have learned that life ’as normal’ is not something we should ever take for granted again.
It has been difficult not to see my family at this time. I live away from my parents and since the pandemic I have missed birthdays and Mother’s Day: things that go by every year with the day together celebrating and not thinking a huge amount about it, but when you cannot spend the, together, it’s difficult.
Keeping busy hasn’t been difficult as my partner and I haven’t changed our working week much! Even when I’m at home from the Vets, I help out on the farm with all the jobs needed to keep the cows and sheep happy and healthy. No matter what’s happening in the world, the farmers are still working just as hard as ever to care for their animals and keep Britain fed!
As soon as lockdown is over, I cannot wait to meet up with my friends and get back to taking part in Young Farmers. We have been trying to keep the YFC spirit up with lockdown activities over social media, but there’s just something different about gathering together and competing face to face with the clubs all across the county.
To anyone who has been struggling with the lockdown I would say appreciate the small things. If you have a garden no matter how big or even if you just have a plant in a pot, watching it grow and tending to it each day makes you realise how little time it takes for things to change from a tiny seed into a beautiful plant. To show how something great can come from a rubbish situation, I planted out some mouldy potatoes that had started to sprout at the start of the lockdown, and I already have some strong potato plants growing from them!
I feel very fortunate during this time that I have the means to keep food on the table and when I’m at home we have wide open spaces to enjoy. Checking the sheep means we do travel short distances as we rent ground away from home, so that means I’ve been lucky enough to see more of the local area. Although it’s been so strange to be on the road and not pass a single car on some journeys.
The pandemic has very much changed how I am working in the veterinary profession and farming at home. It’s not simple to treat animals on a normal day. Making sure that we maintain social distancing and trying to treat animals on an emergency only basis makes the job very difficult. Trading as a farmer is not as simple as waltzing into Mole Valley and picking up some calf milk powder any more or going to market and seeing what the going price of lamb is at the minute. Everything has changed and it’s pushing everyone’s mental health to the limit. The stress is putting immense pressure on us all and we have animal welfare at the forefront of our minds, which means we are not only stressed about our own wellbeing but the animals too.
My partner and I have maintained a strong relationship throughout the whole lockdown period. In the grand scheme of things for us, other than small blips, our lives have not changed massively. We still get up, go to work, and come home. I am still working in a team of people (although much reduced with many furloughed) and my partner is doing much the same as always; working alone or with his father and then working with me when I am home. We count ourselves very lucky to have what we have and each other during this pandemic.