If there’s one thing Wollongong Wolves defender Taylor McDonald has understood more so these past few weeks since football went into lockdown mode is the huge appreciation he has given to the thousands of doctors, nurses alike fighting on the COVID-19 frontline across the nation – one in particular being fellow teammate Nick Littler and the others being both his sisters.
“The whole experience has been and continues to be so surreal.
“Both my sisters work in health care and emergency services as well as playing alongside Nick Littler who is in the front line working as a Respiratory RN in the public health system.
“I can now truly appreciate their tireless contributions and efforts to the community.
“If I have learnt anything from this experience so far it’s to appreciate everything and everyone around us.
“Some of us take the simplest of things for granted and as we have seen, these things can be taken in an instant.”
The Current National Premier Leagues NSW Men’s Premiership winner and NPL Champion has resisted hibernating and has hit up a tough fitness regime in a huge way.
“I actually cleaned out my garage when the news broke.
“I bought a home gym a few years back that’s now being put to good use.
“I get on the ball when I can, but just trying to keep ticking over for the time being.
“Since the football lockdown took place, I have spent quality time with family which is nice. I’ve also been doing the odd-job around the house and creating teaching programs for relatives who are home schooling their kids.”
Work wise, apart from football being suspended till May 31st, McDonald has still been on point with his teaching duties as a primary school teacher albeit finding it tough as students have found it hard to realise the situation the globe is currently in.
“Fortunately, both my girlfriend and I are Primary School Teachers.
“Attendance levels have been minimal.
“Younger students don’t fully comprehend the situation we are currently living in.
“They miss their friends, routines and social/sporting activities have been taken from them.
“Trying to educate the younger students on this pandemic has been extremely difficult.
“Kids don’t truly understand the situation we are in and feel confused which has been tough to deal with.”
The world game has been a sport that has kept the 23-year-old fit and healthy since he could walk and it was no secret that the absence of not being able to be around his teammates, playing on match day and fighting for three points has been sorely missed.
“I miss everything about our wonderful game that is why it’s the number one sport in the world.
“However, I’d be lying if I didn’t say I do miss the boys and camaraderie.
“When you see them more than your own family during the week, it’s a bit of a shock to the system.”
With constant government updates given on a daily basis by both Federal and State MP’s, the message of staying home and looking after yourself ensuring you are exercising social distancing has been paramount to the methods of stopping the COVID-19 spread.
McDonald took the opportunity to address the support that was needed by everyone in the football family to fight this as one in order of getting back to normality sooner rather than later.
“Firstly, you need to follow the guidelines that have been put in place.
“They are there solely to protect us.
“Most importantly, be kind and help one another.
“Support your club in whatever way that you can as well during this tough period.
“The survival of football clubs is dependent on the support of its stakeholders.
“If you are a fan, volunteer, coach, player, or parent, assist in whatever way you can.
“Every contribution counts.
“I have no doubt in the world, once this time has passed, we will be stronger than ever.
“I eagerly await the day when we can all go back to enjoying football and everything it has to offer again.”