The results are in from our simple monthly poll of carers. This month England came out of its second lockdown and restrictions varied across the UK. With different measures in place and different parts of the country experiencing different rates of infection.
The one trend that has been seen is rates of infection rising as soon as restrictions are eased. News of a vaccine has certainly given people hope but we know we are not out of the pandemic yet.
As carers, our concerns about the virus are at an all time high. Some may had already decided a Christmas bubble was not right for them or them. Many of us are feeling that December is a time to be extra cautious and recognise that even with a vaccine we can't relax yet.
Protecting those we care for from the virus
For most this has always been the goal, to protect our loved ones.
"We are so near to getting vaccinated that I would be distraught after all this time if my son contracted the virus"
"This has been my absolute priority since March"
"My wife is already seriously ill with Alzheimers. The last thing she needs right now is to contract the virus"
"It is terrifying how vulnerable we feel, enough to shut ourselves away"
The ongoing stress
The pressure of the last 10 months with less support and an increasing number of challenges (and now add in Christmas) as carers we really are under pressure.
"My lack of practical support, waiting a year and still no O.T visit"
"Got a lot of plates spinning right now"
"Things are changing with my son again and causing us both stress, it's like groundhog day"
In many cases as carers we are putting the people we care for ahead of our own wellbeing, doing all we can to prevent the virus spreading for our families and communities.
"This dedicated focus must be saving lives, having done this for 10 months it feels like to stop now would be to have wasted all that effort. When restrictions are lifted we still apply our own risk assessment and make our decisions based on what is best for the people we care for."
Back in March to think about doing what we have been doing for just six weeks felt like a huge mountain to climb. We never thought we could keep going for this long.
Although the end may be in sight and we are feeling hopeful about the spring another three months of this might not be sustainable and could leave many carers exhausted and lead to carer breakdown. We need to use what we have learnt over the past 10 months and make use of the things that help us to be resilient more than ever.
Connect with community - be part of something
Have someone to talk to, someone that will really listen
Get help with the practical things where you can
If as a carer you feel like you have reached a dead end with any of the three things above please do get in touch, the Mobilise Community are creative, supportive and welcoming. We are great at getting past obstacles and encouraging one another.
Start with an individual support call with one of our carer support team (available seven days a week and evenings too) or simply sign up below.