A Cleator Moor mum has spoken out about the anxiety she suffered working on the frontline in a dementia care home.

Yvonne Myers is a chaplain at Amathea Care Home in Workington.

The single mum-of-two said she started thinking about her own mortality more during the coronavirus crisis.

“At the beginning we didn’t know what we were up against, we had people who had been very ill, we lost two members of staff in our organisation and one of our members of staff got seriously ill with it.”

But Yvonne did not let her anxiety overwhelm her.

“As a chaplain I am used to dealing with anxiety, however the coronavirus pandemic has caused many more people to experience it and for valid reasons.

“Those on the frontline like myself who have face to face contact with confirmed cases worry about our own mortality and infecting others. As a single mother to two small children of primary school age I knew I had to deal with my anxiety with practical steps.

“First was to ensure that my will was in order and that anyone I had nominated to look after my girls should I not be here, would still be happy to do so. Secondly I kept thinking of all the things I wanted to tell my children as they grew up and advice I wanted to give. I found a glass jar and as I think of things, I pop the message on a small piece of paper and put it in the jar.

“I was inspired to write a book for my daughters. Based on the months of the year and seasons of life, I have written a story that I hope will help the girls move forward in life, should I not be around.”

The story is based on a den the family built in the woods at Big Hill in Cleator Moor.

The girls, who are four and six, also acted it out during a recent walk there.

Yvonne said: “They really liked it, the basis of the story is from one of their ideas, I developed it.

“One of the residents who doesn’t have dementia liked it so much that I gave him a copy and changed the names to those of his two grandchildren.

“It just gives me peace of mind that if something happens to me somebody can read to them a familiar story and it shows what my hopes and dreams for them are.

“It’s good that there’s a lot of talk about mental wellbeing, but it’s also good not to push these thoughts aside and do something positive with it to deal with our anxiety.”