‘Mother’s Day highlights the distance’ as Longford child visits granny through a window pane

Jessica Thompson

Reporter:

Jessica Thompson

Email:

jessica.thompson@longfordleader.ie

‘Mother’s Day highlights the distance’ as Longford child visits granny through a window pane

So close and yet so far: Heidi reaches out to her grandmother, Anne Corcoran, from the arms of her mother, Shelley Corcoran

After what was an unusual St Patrick’s Day came a very different Mothering Sunday, with Minister for Health Simon Harris urging people to spend the day apart to prevent transmission of the Covid-19 virus.

For Longford Leader photographer, Shelley Corcoran, and her daughter , Heidi, this year was a huge contrast to last year’s Mother’s Day.

In 2019, Heidi Corcoran Boylan was blessed to be able to celebrate with her mother, Shelley, her grandmother, Anne Corcoran, her great grandmoter, 94-year-old Rose Mollaghan and her two godmothers, Mary and Catherine Mollaghan.

This year, due to the dangers of the coronavirus, Heidi has had to be kept apart from some of the wonderful ladies in her life.

“It has been very strange; on the one hand, I’m happy that I still have my mom, my grandmother and Heidi’s godmothers in my life and Heidi’s life but on the other hand, of course, it is sad not being able to spend time with these people,” said Shelley.

“We’re a very close family and normally see each other on a daily basis as we live just across the road from each other. So it is strange not doing that. And Mother’s Day highlights the distance.”

To celebrate the day, Shelley and Heidi dropped flowers and cards to Heidi’s great grandmother, grandmother and godmother, leaving them outside the house so that the older ladies could bring them in afterwards.

“We talked through the window, which at times was heartbreaking as we are a very tactile family, always giving hugs and kisses,” Shelley explained.

Read also: People in Ireland have donated over €677,000 to COVID-19 GoFundMe campaigns

“But Heidi’s grandmother, great-grandmother and Godmother’s eyes lit up when they saw Heidi and Heidi thought it was a game at first but then was a bit confused as to why she couldn’t go inside to see them.”

Communication at the moment is via videos of Heidi, who is too young for a phone conversation. But the videos sent to her older relatives via phone really brighten up everyone’s day.

“In this age of technology, I think we all too often think that we need to take time out from technology and not be on it constantly but it has definitely been a godsend throughout the Covid-19 pandemic to let people communicate with each other,” said Shelley.

“Last year we were all together, enjoying each other’s company, sharing hugs, kisses and talking face to face. Never in a million years did we ever think there would be a world situation where we could not be in physical contact. It is surreal and at times seems like a horror film.

“Communicating through technology and with panes of glass between us seems something like a tragic tale rather than reality. But my mom always says truth is sometimes stranger than fiction.

“Although it is difficult to be separated, looking at the bigger picture, if this saves the lives of the women and mothers in Heidi’s life and ultimately curtails the spread, it is very much worth it,” she concluded.

Read also: "Will it take what's happening in other countries like Italy before we all wake up?" - Garda appeal on social distancing