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When Covid-19 brings it home

For those who know me, they will know I am (or was) an amateur singer and have been for most of my life. I have often been asked to sing “Bring him home” from Les Miserables. You know the one – the show stopper.

But I don’t think I could sing it at the moment. Stay with me – there is a point coming…

Today I am writing as a father.
No strike that – a PROUD father.

I am working from home and, like the rest of my team I am extremely busy helping our clients with ensuring the success of their websites to help them ride through this very rough situation. (We will get through this folks – just stick with it)

Of course we are continuing to design and build more websites – because that’s what we do.

Today I am writing as a father – no strike that – a proud father.

To set the scene: I am one of those who is classed as ‘vulnerable’ as I am on a drug that reduces my immune system. I feel absolutely fine apart from being a bit stir crazy just starting my 4th week of total isolation. Frankly I feel a bit embarrassed at receiving the NHS letter when there are hundreds of thousands in real jeopardy from this virus.

Now to the point of this personal post. For me and a reducing number of people I know, Covid-19 has been at arms length to me and my family. I read about it rampaging its way all over the world and watch the news through parted fingers like watching a horror movie as a child – you don’t want to watch but you can’t help it.

Covid-19 has this week been brought much closer to home for me. I now feel a mixture of fear and pride at what my youngest son has just been recruited to do by the NHS.

Ben is in his second year of studying paramedic science at Worcester University and of course everyone is very proud of the career choice he has made. He is a natural carer and bright and friendly. And his is very enthusiastic at the prospect of a career that he seems completely suited for.

I and many millions throughout the country literally applaud the work of the NHS for what they are doing by putting themselves at risk with, if you believe the reports are correct – are having to use sub-standard equipment – if they can get any at all – and working till breaking point, each and every one of them.

So, the roughly 1.5 million staff of the NHS need every ounce of our support and assistance by doing as we are told; by staying in and not spreading it and also by not providing unnecessary reasons for them to have to care for us and therefore being taken away from caring for the truly sick.

The West Midlands Ambulance service has recruited trainee paramedics to help in the fight against this illness.

For the NHS to need to go to students to help with the fight against this disease is worrying by itself but after giving that further thought – it really shows how understaffed and vulnerable the whole NHS actually is that they have to go to relatively untrained young people to help. We need to sort this folks.

So, back to Ben. I sit here typing this having just seen the announcement that the Prime Minister has been admitted to intensive care. Boris, I may not agree with your politics and certainly not about Brexit, but I wish you well sir and I hope you recover soon.

Reading about Boris
‘brings it home’.

Knowing my son started his first shift of cleaning ‘Covid’ ambulances today after doing training on Saturday just gone, ‘brings it home’.

Reading about Boris ‘brings it home’.

I watched a fantastic rendition of ‘Bring him home’ only last week. It has become somehow quite painfully poignant. I urged you to watch this clip on YouTube. (opens new window) I warn you, you may need a tissue. I did.

After 2 weeks on ‘cleaning Covid ambulances’ duty Ben will be going out in ambulances with other paramedics and treating people on the front line in this battle.

I am proud, worried and feeling particularly pathetic that I can not do a damn thing to help him or protect him. Stuck indoors as I am. Trying to help by doing nothing does not come easily to me. A very strange how-do-you-do indeed. I kana their are many families of NHS staff around the country feeling just the same.

I am with you.

The best I have been able to do is procure a freezer (I dare you try and find a chest freezer) to go into his digs to hopefully allow him to get food – for him to stay healthy – to be able to keep us alive. How did it come to this?

Anyway, I present to you my youngest son Ben:

The photo above was taken during last weekends training to clean Ambulances. In two weeks time he goes on the front line.

With your permission I will quote some lyrics from the song from Les Mis.

God on high, Hear my prayer
In my need, You have always been there.
He is young, He’s afraid
Let him rest, Heaven blessed.
Bring him home, Bring him home,

Bring him home.

By Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schönberg

Be safe my son. I am so very proud of you.

(Sorry if this was a bit indulgent)

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