We kept the kids home. We un-enrolled from our lives. We ordered little kid masks. We took them out of swimming lessons. We didn’t go to parks for a time. We put up a playset in our yard. And then a pool. And then two other pools, after the first and second ones broke. We didn’t go to Thanksgiving or Christmas last year. We turned a room or two into a “school room.” I facilitated distance learning for my then-first grader while trying to get my then-too-little-for-traditional-school online school options via Outschool.com. I did this while the baby transformed from an infant to a toddler to a climber.
We wore special masks. We turned down social invitations. We tried to enroll the kids in special vaccine trials. We got vaccinated as soon as possible. We kept our kids up-to-schedule with their other vaccinations.
We kept our oldest home from school, even after the district opened up in February of this year to going back to in-person. Finally, at the end of March, we did send him back.
We didn’t do traditional camps over the summer. We did do a lot of outdoor stuff, like mountain biking, and in my case, running.
We haven’t been to an indoor restaurant for a long ass time. Years? But really, who wants to dine indoors (or anywhere, ever) with kids. We don’t go to movies. We don’t go to the fucking Frozen musical that would be so cool for my six-year-old daughter to see.
All of the adults and old-enough kids with whom we socialize are vaccinated. Some are even antsy to get a booster.
My husband took our older two kids to a Cub Scouts camping trip (outdoors, clearly). I took my toddler to Iowa to see my family. Who is grieving. Who is sad. Who has lost so much.
In Iowa, my toddler caught COVID-19. My toddler. Who doesn’t go to daycare. Who doesn’t go to ECFE. Who doesn’t go to Sunday School or playdates. Who follows me around, day and night. He caught it from family who have, now confirmed, breakthrough cases.
And now I have the virus. As does my husband. My big kids, so far, do not.
But they’re out of school for the next two weeks and, woe is me, I will be facilitating some lackadaisical version of distance learning for a second grader and a kindergartner while keeping my mask on and my toddler upstairs. Maybe I will employ Alexa somehow.
We have mild symptoms. Other than anger. My anger (and self-pity) is pretty severe.
Plus, it’s my birthday on Friday. And I had special plans.
One Reply to “But It’s Iowa”
Happy birthday to Erin, the writer! Great writing here, from a mother of three. I’ll drop something off – on your porch soon.