THE coronavirus pandemic will cause a Warracknabeal mum to miss her eldest son's ninth birthday and her wedding anniversary.
Teagan Roche is an ambulance community officer with Ambulance Victoria, and is one exam period away from earning a Bachelor's Degree in Paramedicine.
She will be away for three weeks altogether.
Mrs Roche said she would not have missed the annual family milestones if she did not need to quarantine.
"I've been to Cairns, Townsville and Rockhampton, because CQU doesn't do its practical assessments in Victoria," she said. "This is the last time I have to go up there.
"I've only really ill have two weeks to prepare for (the exams), because originally the university was going to see if they could offer the assessments at their Melbourne campus. Because Melbourne went into stage four restrictions, they couldn't.
"It was only last week when another student rung to find out what was happening we learned we had to come up or wait another 12 months.
"It's a pain in the butt, but Ambulance Victoria are going to pay the quarantine costs for me.
"I go to Melbourne airport next Sunday, October 11th. It's costing me about $700 to fly return, which is a bit dearer than usual."
Mrs Roche is not looking forward to the flight to Townsville.
"I like flying, but one of the other students I'm staying with in Townsville had to fly to Brisbane yesterday from Victoria. He said once he got to Brisbane airport, he had never felt so humiliated and interrogated in his life," she said.
Mrs Roche, who has been a nurse for 15 years, will undertake three days of paramedic practice scenarios and four days of assessment for trauma in paramedicine. She will return to Victoria on November 3.
"I will get a lot of time to study for the assessments (in quarantine), but it's going to be a mental challenge more than anything," she said.
"I've spoken to one lady in Warracknabeal who flew up to Brisbane to see her daughter's new twins a couple of months ago, and she advised me to stay positive about it, otherwise it will be an awful experience. Mum suggested I take up crocheting, but that's not really my thing, so I'll just have to try and do a bit of exercise."
Her two sons are Hudson, seven, and Seth, who will turn nine later this month. Mrs and Mr Roche have set out a plan for his birthday.
"Chris has to face-time me in the morning when he's opening presents and when they are singing happy birthday after school, and I've organised a lady in town to make a cake," she said.
"We'll organise for Chris to take him down to the park with a few friends and have a bit of a party, a sausage sizzle or something. Chris has had to organize it the last two years, so I'm sure he will have it under control."
Once she graduates, Mrs Roche hopes to stay in Warracknabeal as a paramedic. But she will need to spend some time in Horsham first.
"I can't do my graduate diploma in Warracknabeal because it's not a dual paramedic branch," she said.
"Hopefully I can work for a couple of years in Horsham and get back to Warrack."
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