One aspect of my job I have always enjoyed is its unpredictability.

Each day is different and there’s no way to predict what you will face or where you will go.

So, it came as a bit of a surprise when in the year which has been the most unpredictable yet, the furthest I’ve went is my living room.

I could never have imagined a world where myself and my colleagues would be writing about the mass closure of pubs, restrictions which force people to stay in their homes and the legislation instructing masks to be worn in public places.

It’s been a massively difficult year for all of us and, for women who experienced pregnancy and labour, the pandemic brought about a whole new set of challenges.

Many Glasgow families were forced to watch from the sidelines as expectant mothers went through birth and labour alone.

The But Not Maternity campaign was started in response to criticisms over the handling of pre-natal appointments and birth when restrictions began to ease.

It was one of the first stories I covered after returning from my own maternity leave this summer.

Councillor Martin McElroy had experienced the difficulty of watching his partner go through the early phases of labour alone in June.

When the couple found out they were expecting last year, no one could have foresaw the circumstances in which little Maria would come into the world.

The Springburn councillor faced a two-day wait by the phone as his partner endured a mammoth 100-hour later alone.

When she reached active labour - the period during birth where women begin to push - Cllr McElroy was allowed to be with reunited with his family.

However, shortly after Maria’s birth, he was forced to leave the hospital again when his partner and daughter were moved to the maternity ward.

At this point, they faced a further three days apart while the tot was treated for jaundice.

The Labour politician described the restrictions as “strange” given it came at a time which saw multiple hospitality spots reopen.

Thankfully, in July the Scottish Government agreed to ease rules around maternity departments and appointments.

In August, I spoke with the incredibly brave and inspirational Beth Clyde.

The pandemic proved an advantage in helping Beth find a diagnosis when symptoms she had been displaying for months saw her sent for scan to look for signs of coronavirus in her lungs.

Tragically, the scan revealed she had Hogkin’s Lymphoma at just 21-years-old and only 10 days before a national lockdown was implemented.

Beth, who was in her fourth year of her zoology honours degree at the University of Glasgow, was forced to undergo her chemotherapy treatments alone due to Covid-19 restrictions.

Not only did Beth manage to cope with the pressures of shielding alone with her mum, and carrying out her treatment without the support of extended family and friends, but she also managed to complete her studies and graduate.

Thankfully, Beth is now in remission and continuing her efforts of positivity by helping other cancer patients.

It is people like Beth, who are so strong and resilient in the face of adversity, who remind us what really matters in life.

In October, another health care problem became apparent when NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde (NHSGGC) patients reported significant delays when receiving their flu vaccinations.

Eileen Beaton and her husband Donald Stanley were both in the “shielding” category when lockdown was announced in March.

However, despite the pair’s vulnerability and the importance of the jab for protection against the potentially deadly flu, the couple were weeks behind in getting their vaccination.

It was revealed, the health board - who had taken over the flu jab process from GPs for the first time this year - opted to use the Scottish Immunisation and Recall System (SIRS), which prioritises vaccinations from youngest to oldest.

The issue prompted the Glasgow Times to launch the Give Our OAPs a Shot campaign in November.

Almost 150 pensioners and vulnerable people got in touch with their concerns of going without the flu jab amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Just weeks after our campaign began, NHSGGC issued an apology and scrapped the SIRS system, vowing to have appointments in place for all over 65s by the end of November.

Lastly, just a few weeks ago, we launched our Bank on Us toy appeal.

Following on from our successful food bank drive last year, we urged our readers to help us save Christmas for the thousands of families facing a bleak festive season in light of the pandemic.

As always, our readers did not disappoint.

We raised a staggering total of almost £15,000 for children in need while hundreds more toys were donated to local schools and charities.

On Friday, children across the city will wake up to a gift under their tree because of you. Thank you for your help.