A family juggling a long-distance relationship has been separated on the final leg of their homecoming journey.
Emily Smith has been living in Grassmere with her three-year-old daughter Madeleine for the past year while her fiance Sean Trodden lives with his three sons in the United Kingdom.
After the outbreak of coronavirus and the strict regulations on flying, the family made hasty arrangements for Mr Trodden to come to Australia where they would apply for a spousal visa.
However, halfway through Mr Trodden's journey in Dubai he was prevented from boarding his flight to Australia and sent back to the United Kingdom despite having his daughter's birth certificate as evidence.
"I'm heartbroken and it's been a stressful weekend sending him back," Ms Smith said.
"I have three step-sons in the UK and one is about to finish school. The plan was when he was finished we could all be here and a family but coronavirus brought those plans forward.
"When Sean said he couldn't get here, the bottom fell out of my world.
"It had been a lot of work to get him here so quickly and from all the information we had heard we believed family members would be allowed to enter.
Madeleine has chronic asthma and was in hospital every month when the family lived in the United Kingdom.
Australian-born Ms Smith brought her daughter here and the three-year-old's health improved dramatically.
The family has been enduring the 15,000 kilometre separation for a year excluding Mr Trodden's two-week holiday to the south-west in October.
"Madeleine doesn't understand what's happening," Ms Smith said.
"She keeps saying Dad will fix the plane and be here soon.
"We have no idea how long this will last."
Ms Smith works at South West TAFE and with the new working from home conditions, she is juggling additional hours as essentially a single mother.
The couple of five years has made inquiries about their situation and have filled out the required exemption form. But it's seems now it's just a waiting game for them.
"Now we can only hope someone reads the form and brings Sean here," Ms Smith said.
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