Imagine being Nicola Sturgeon right now. I know that might be hard for many of you, impossible for some. But just try.

As First Minister of Scotland she already had substantial powers including over health, the justice system, education, councils and parts of income tax.That's substantial responsibility, though Ms Sturgeon as a Scottish nationalist would like more.

But leave aside the constitutional and think about what having those responsibilities means now as she leads the fight against COVID-19.

Of course, fighting the coronavirus pandemic is not just a matter for the Scottish government. When it comes to fighting the virus financially Westminster is pivotal - an extra £3.5 billion is coming Holyrood's way this year.

But Nicola Sturgeon takes the day to day decisions on allocating that money, on the NHS, care homes, the police service, lockdown measures, education and much, much more.

Even for a politician with so much experience in government - she has been a minister since the SNP first formed a minority government in 2007 - and who is famously hard-working, that is a heavy burden.

And that burden is intensified by the stark fact decisions she takes are matters of life and death. People's lives and livelihoods depend on the First Minister.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon during a visit to the NHS Louisa Jordan Hospital, a new temporary hospital at the SEC event centre in Glasgow. Credit: PA

In terms of the COVID-19 crisis the main criticism of Ms Sturgeon is that she and her government did not follow World Health Organisation advice and "test, test, test' early.

And that her administration, acting on the advice of senior medics and scientists, was slow out of the blocks when it came to locking down Scotland to try to prevent the spread of this deadly virus.

Incidentally, exactly the same criticisms - they come from a large number of academics who are public health experts or epidemiologists - have been levelled at the UK government.

So how does Nicola Sturgeon cope? And does she worry that the decisions she has taken are the wrong ones; that those decisions might have cost, rather than saved, lives?

I got a brief insight into the First Minister's mindset when I interviewed her yesterday for Representing Border.

The interview covered a wide range of subjects but I asked her whether on lockdown and testing in particular, she ever considered that she had made the wrong decisions?

Her reply: "I wouldn't be human if I didn't every single day ask myself am I doing the right things, could I do any more? I question myself, I interrogate myself every single day on these things."

The First Minister added that while there have been academics who have said she has the wrong policies, she could name others who say she, her advisers and her government were right.

She added that "...the easiest thing in the world is to have 20/20 hindsight...", meaning that, looked at from where we are now, decisions made weeks or months ago seem flawed.

That is the nub of it for Ms Sturgeon, as it is indeed for Boris Johnson. Their critics, and they include opposition politicians, point to other countries where the infection and death rates are lower.

In terms of comparisons with Scotland, a small country, it is said by some academics that Ireland, New Zealand and Norway have had more success in controlling the virus and minimising deaths.

To that Ms Sturgeon counters that we are still in the early days of this outbreak - a sobering thought in itself - and that only in the fullness of time will we know the true picture.

She points to some countries, Germany for instance, which have been doing better than we have but have recently seen an upturn in coronavirus cases.

The First Minister accepts that this is an unsatisfactory answer for families who have lost loved ones, or care and hospital workers who say she has not acted fast enough on protective equipment.

She believes she should be judged, but not judged now. Others including opposition parties, trades unions, relatives of those who have died, and a number of scientists say the judgement should come sooner.

Credit: PA

Nicola Sturgeon is a famously tough, combative politician in what we once called 'normal times'. Ferocious and unsparing in debate, ruthless when she had to be.

But there is a human being in there too, one who has candidly said that as this crisis has gone on she has had at least momentary moments of 'meltdown'.

She told me: "The most difficult thing I have had to do as First Minister is stand at that podium (in St Andrew's House) day after day reporting on the number of people who have died. The idea that any of us do not feel this personally and acutely is not the case."

So if you can't imagine yourself as Nicola Sturgeon right now, perhaps it is for the best. Imagine being the bearer of devastatingly bad news almost every day of the week. And imagine the strain that and taking those life or death decisions would put on anyone.

It's her job as First Minister, of course. Rightly, we expect our politicians to take even the toughest of decisions in the best interest of the country.

But when it comes to judging Nicola Sturgeon, and judged she will be in the end by the electorate, it is worth at least bearing in mind that line from Shakespeare: "Uneasy is the head that wears a Crown."