World Gratitude Day: Its time to thank the person who has helped you through these hard times

Close your eyes and replay the movie of your life since the pandemic hit. Think of how you felt when things became real. You may have guessed from the start that our lives were going to change, or you might have had an ‘oh no’ moment when the world was brought to a halt.

Think about those first few weeks of lockdown and how you coped- or did not. Consider the ‘twilight zone’ as many of us parents call, when you zombie-d through the day, doing anything you could to keep your kids happy. Think about the last few months, when you navigated this new normal, trying your best to stay positive.

Throughout these times, there will be one face that stands out. One person, or maybe two, who made the hard times slightly easier. Who put a smile on your face when you felt like crying or was there to listen to you whine or vent. Someone who helped you parent, work or simply deal with life through the pandemic, be it your partner, your parents, a close friend, or family member. We all have that special someone who comes to mind. That person who we could not have survived the last few months without. On this World Gratitude Day, it is time to thank that person.

For me, this person is my sister. My little sister, who stepped in when the lockdown lifted to look after my daughter when writing with a human attached to my feet, became too much. Without my sister, my six-year-old (who is an only child) would never have had the chance to play and laugh and mess with someone who was not a figure of authority for over four months. I will be forever grateful when that weight was lifted from my shoulders after those endless weeks in lockdown.

My sister was my COVID angel. When I speak to others about their pandemic experiences, everyone seems to have a person who brought them through the hardest times, even with the smallest of gestures. From picking up groceries to daily chats over the wall or on the phone. Maybe your kid’s aunts and uncles pitched in, maybe you have a stellar neighbour who helped you out. Perhaps your partner blew you away with their patience and kindness. It might even have been one of your children who made you so incredibly proud when they stepped up to help - instead of adding to the worry, they soothed you with their support.

There are no words strong enough to thank this person who helped you at a time when you needed it most. There are no gestures big enough to express your thanks to someone who put time into making your life easier when the world turned upside down. However, as it is World Gratitude Day, take the opportunity to let them know you appreciate what they did for you. Even if a simple thanks seems small, it will brighten their day and we all know how much that means during these difficult times.

With her daughter Evie as her muse, Anna writes about mumhood and all its intersections from mental health to movies, social issues to pop culture. Anna lives in Dublin with her daughter, partner, three younger sisters and parents. She is a dreadful cook, a fair guitar player and thinks caffeine should be given as a yearly vaccine to parents - courtesy of the HSE.

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