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Maureen Neighbour


Reflections on 2020, it’s the most boring year I have ever known. I am in my 80’s and I live on my own. I have found the consequences of the pandemic very isolating. I have missed people, and although some friends ring me I am not very good at calling them. I worry that my timing may be inconvenient. I have been told to stay inside, so most of the time I only go out for my daily drive.

It didn’t take long for me to get bored of watching the TV. I did follow the news at the start and I have been interested in what was happening in America because I used to live there. I haven’t really felt like reading, so a lot of the time I have played on my iPad or sat with my word search books.

I do my meetings on Zoom and it’s lovely to be able to see people. I haven’t missed going to the Kingdom Hall too much because of that.

I want to avoid getting the virus, so I do not go shopping. I am very lucky that a friend who lives in my block does my food shopping for me. In fact, I don’t know what I’d do without her! I have also been ordering meals from Age Concern. They are very nice and not expensive.

In June, I had a very bad bout of arthritis which may have been made worse by the amount of sitting I had been doing. The pain became so bad that I had a fall and had difficulty getting up. I had to call 999 and an ambulance was sent out to me. The paramedics were great, they took me to Hospital for an X-ray to ensure that I had not broken any bones. I was swabbed for the virus there, but nobody really spoke to me and it was very quiet. I was kept in overnight, provided with a meal and then breakfast before being taken home the next morning.

The pain was still there however so the on call doctor came out to me. She realised quite quickly that the pain I was feeling was arthritic and gave me a prescription for the pain. My local pharmacy was good enough to drop the painkillers to me. The pills didn’t work, so I had to ask the doctor to come back. This time she gave me a cortisone injection. The injection was very painful but it did relieve the pain. She really was very lovely, but she wore a mask and I found it difficult to understand what she was saying. I was very pleased my God- daughter was with me.