‘Maybe I was arrogant thinking Covid-19 wouldn’t affect me as badly as it did’

The top stories from Irish Times Abroad

Covid-19 has impacted people's lives and health in unexpected ways over the last few months, and many Irish abroad have been sharing their experiences. Our most popular story this month is from Dubliner Yvonne Cassidy who wrote about her experience of getting coronavirus and how she didn't expect the virus to affect her as much as it did. "I look back at mid-March me, running in the park every morning, working more hours remotely in my job than I used to in the office, and I wonder if I was afraid of getting it? I don't think I was."

A number of countries are currently easing lockdown restrictions around the world. We'd love to hear how you are finding the "new normal". Click here to share your views or email abroad@irishtimes.com. Cork woman Emma Power, who has lived in New Zealand for seven years, wrote how she had expected to feel ecstatic to do the activities that were banned during lockdown but instead was anxious and sad: "Since coming out of lockdown I've been a mess, and I miss my children."

Thinking of returning to Ireland? Danielle McLaughlin from Crosscare Migrant Project has put together an extensive article on everything an Irish person living abroad needs to know about returning to Ireland during the Covid-19 pandemic. She has answered questions about visas, welfare payments, self-isolation, tax on earnings abroad and more. The story from Dublin couple, Anthony and Nicky Kearney, about their struggle to move home remained in our most-read for days: "We had lived more than 10 years in Australia and were excited to be returning home with our five children. Then coronavirus hit." Also popular this week was another article from Australia highlight how some Irish backpackers are feeling vulnerable and desperate

Love in the air even during a global pandemic. Jennifer O'Connell, from Co Clare, wrote about her pandemic wedding in Singapore that was able to take place thanks to the kindness of strangers: "Every second was nerve-racking". And finally, Irish people living in Britain fear they will not be able to see their family in Ireland until 2021 as foreign travel remains a concern even after coronavirus restrictions begin to lift, representative groups have said: "Reality, is really tough."


If you would like to contribute by writing your own story (max 600 words) you are welcome to contact abroad@irishtimes.com.

You'll find more stories by and about the Irish diaspora on irishtimes.com/abroad.

To receive this digest to your inbox each week, you can join the free Irish Times Abroad Network here.

Thank you for reading.