These heartbreaking pictures show a self-isolating nurse visiting her two-year-old son though a living room window – after being separated from him for SEVEN WEEKS.
Care quality nurse Charlotte Cole took the ‘agonising’ decision to move her son George to her parents’ home on April 1 after a confirmed coronavirus case at one of her workplaces.
As both Charlotte, who oversees seven care homes, and her husband Daniel, a data analyst, are key workers, grandparents Bridget and Robert Younger, who live five minutes away, are caring for the toddler.
Charlotte and Daniel, both 30, make alternate daily trips to visit George, FaceTime regularly and are able to go together on a weekend.
Speaking about the moment they decided to move their son, mum-of-one Charlotte said: “It was an extremely difficult decision to make.
“No mum would want to be put in that situation – we agonised and tried to put it off for as long as we could.
“Sadly the decision was made for us when I found out that some of the residents and colleagues at the homes were experiencing symptoms of the virus.
“It’s always very emotional when we go to visit because he doesn’t understand why we have to leave him.
“But I try to look on the positive side that at least we can see him – even though it’s through the window. It’s better than not being able to see him at all.”
The length of the lockdown has shocked the couple and has meant they miss George even more than they thought.
Charlotte, from Kirkham, Lancs., said: “We anticipated it for a few weeks when the lockdown was first announced but then it was extended twice.
“It is tough, we have our down days but Daniel and I just try to support each other.
“The house is extremely quiet and tidy and I really miss doing the little things with George.”
Although little George is safe, Charlotte’s parents, Bridget, 55, and Robert, 65, fear their daughter is at considerable risk.
Bridget, a grammar school cook, said: “I worry all the time when Charlotte goes to work but she keeps saying to me it’s her duty.
“She’s always wanted to be a nurse ever since she was a little girl.
“Her dedication and determination to the job and putting others first is second to none.”
Charlotte has urged people to continue following the government advice ahead of lockdown restrictions easing.
She said: “It’s annoying when sacrifices have been made by key workers who are helping the country get through the pandemic.
“I remember when lockdown first started and I saw friends casually walking around as if nothing had changed.
“It was extremely disheartening at one point as we’re making a conscious effort to follow the advice as best as we possibly can.”
She added: “I’m very fortunate my parents don’t live too far away especially when you hear about the stories of parents struggling to arrange childcare.
“If my parents weren’t here then George would have to be at home which would make me worry more than I normally do.
“Mum and dad are incredibly supportive. I cannot thank them enough.”
Bridget’s neighbour, professional photographer Pete Austin, 45, captured the emotional moment when the couple visited their son on May 10.
He said: “When Charlotte and Daniel arrived and walked down the short drive to the front window George lit up.
“His smile was full of happiness – it was beautiful to watch.
“To share in their precious but short time together was both humbling and joyful. It’s something I won’t forget for a long time.”
The images have been entered into the Hold Still competition – a project headed by the Duchess of Cambridge which aims to capture the life of the nation during the pandemic.