East Devon director of two companies Sandra Sampson writes for this title.

Exmouth Journal: Sandra SampsonSandra Sampson (Image: Sandra Sampson)

For Christmas I decided to give my husband who is terminally ill a new puppy which he has since named Bean.

She has not arrived yet but will do early February. This new arrival has given us all a new lease of life as we receive regular pictures of her progress as she develops from a blind static small bundle to an active and boisterous puppy. From bean bag to jumping bean.

I decided this was the best present for my Husband and would be a worthy companion for him as he struggles with this terrible disease. Something to bring a smile to his face and something to take his mind off his various travails, aches and pains.

I have to say he was thrilled and cannot wait for her arrival.

Its amazing what the prospect of a new arrival into the household has done for the rest of our close-knit family.

The puppy must have had the most presents of all of us over Christmas, and she has not even arrived, from raincoat, to doorstop, from squeezy toy to treats and a bed she has them all and she has not even seen her new home!

The positivity a new life brings is often forgotten and it is particularly poignant during Christmas where we all celebrate the birth of Jesus all around the Christian world.

It has certainly made a good deal of difference in our house, just as a new baby would in any house.

For new life is an important part of human procreation, it comes magically and defencelessly and yet of independent mind it develops into a new character with its own needs and habits. Its own persona and its own philosophies and behaviours.

My three children all from the same origins and all brought up similarly have turned into three very different independent people. Each approaches an issue in a different way, each has chosen a different path: one a farmer, one has joined the family business and one a Norland nanny. All went to the same schools and all went onto University, one to read Agriculture, the second Journalism and the third Early Years Development and the prestigious Norland qualification.

I am very proud of all three of them but I am just as amazed how different they are.

They have always brought me immense happiness and pride and they all continue to bring great happiness and joy to both their parents. They all have an excellent set of values and each of them has made a positive impact on those around them, with their kind and compassionate natures.

New life comes into our world unburdened with worries and unfettered by history. It comes in with eyes wide open, exploring and trying everything to discover what it likes and what it doesn’t.

Unburdened of peer pressure and rules and regulation it bravely trusts its natural instincts to keep it alive. Unshackled by regulation and financial pressures it just plain enjoys life without precedent or prejudice.

Post the current pandemic with the advent of the enormous national inoculation programme that will help all of us move forward into what will undoubtedly be a very brave new world, I hope and pray we can again move forward in our lives and take the lessons and freedoms of a new-born, approaching life with an open and inquisitive mind, without fear of failure.

I hope as we all begin to escape the shackles of Covid we can renew ourselves to think, act and behave like a new arrival in this world to be positive, to be imaginative to relearn to laugh and have fun together. To not take life or ourselves too seriously again but to have that perspective and understanding that the vast majority of us live very well in Devon and have been very lucky to live in such a marvellous county.