Mother grateful despite lockdown 78th birthday

People celebrating birthdays during the COVID19 state of emergency orders are having to make do with smaller gatherings.

Despite not having all her family and friends around, Temukisa Seiuli, of Vaitele, who celebrated her 78th birthday this week, remains grateful.

During an interview with the Samoa Observer, the mother of 10 and grandmother to over 50 grandchildren and great grandchildren said she believes the greatest gift to her are her children and family.

"I insisted on a big birthday celebration because I have so many children and their children and their grandchildren," she said. 

"But with the new rules, I now we can't. So we just did a small celebration under our own roof. I was still very happy to know I was at least saving them from this virus."

During the birthday celebration, only her two daughters and her one son and their children whom they all live under were present. They kept the social distance with the exception of a group photo.

Mrs. Seiuli added that the police officers were patrolling the area that night to monitor the S.O.E.

Her children, their children and grandchildren were all excited and looking forward to her birthday celebration. But border shutdowns means they couldn't travel to Samoa. 

They used the internet to communicate their well wishes.

For Mrs. Seiuli, she is grateful for the gift of life.

"I have enjoyed a lot of good things in life especially having children," she said. 

"Having children is the greatest gift God gave me as all I have now are my children. All glory to God for these wonderful 78 years he had given me."

She also urged everyone to take extra care in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

"I hope everyone stays safe from this coronavirus and do the right thing."

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