MND, Self-Isolation and Me (Valerie O'Carroll) - IMNDA

MND, Self-Isolation and Me (Valerie O’Carroll)

April 8th, 2020

Valerie O’Carroll is from Dublin and living with MND. Valerie was the face of our Sponsored Silence this year and what an impact she made. Her colleagues in Ballymun Child & Family Resource Centre all got behind the campaign and we are incredibly grateful. They are all like a big huge family. Valerie is now working from home, so we asked her how she is getting on during this period of self isolation…


Sponsored Silence Valerie 3 Scaled E1578656095562


Well this is day 22 in my isolation; to say it’s been difficult is an understatement! A least I’m working from home which is definitely helping my headspace.

I work in the community and voluntary sector so we are still looking after vulnerable clients who are helping me to focus on other things and other people.

So, what do I do to fill in the time when I’m not working….

Siel Bleu is a fantastic group who provide activities for those who can’t move that well, they do chair exercises for people who don’t have a lot of mobility. they are providing free classes on Facebook at 11am and 2pm every day.  Every day I’m sitting in front of my iPad waiting on this class to start. That keeps me busy for about 30 minutes.

Siel Bleu Ireland is the first specific effort to promote exercise among older adults and patient groups in Ireland, with the aim of improving overall wellbeing. They design programmes with a preventive approach that benefits all adults, at any age, and at any stage of their lives.


This is a big issue, eating because of boredom, it is terrible I reckon I’ll be at least 2 stone heavier when this is over, but I’ll tackle that when it is all over.

I‘m really trying to distract myself from this, but it is very hard at times, so most of the time I just give in and eat.

Board games are good. We have found some that were in the attic when our kids were small they are great, really fun and before you know it 2 hours have gone by!

The other thing I find really good is keeping in touch with friends and also connecting with people you haven’t seen in years is Facebook and Twitter. I would have always given out about these before but now I find them a real life saver at times (but not all the time).


This is something I love doing because I get to see my 5 grandchildren, which always makes my day. I can also talk to my work colleagues and friends.

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