As we head into our 8th week, we did something different yesterday: we went to Nana and Papa’s house.
It’s been hard for the past couple of months to not see them. We’re so used to going over almost every weekend, and you two love playing in their backyard and with your cousins. Last summer we spent a lot of time over there and Papa had a ton of fun getting all of you very wet. This year, it looks like you’ll only be getting wet in the tub at bath time.
The last time we saw your grandparents was the end of February. After that, they were redoing their roof and there was so much mess everywhere they really didn’t want all the grandkids wandering around and possibly getting hurt. Then schools closed and the Safer at Home order was issued and we got stuck with Nana’s wok. Which is why we had to drive out; Nana was missing her wok.
Two years ago, we were a half hour away. Now we’re an hour to an hour and a half. It’s been over 2 months since we drove over, over two months since we saw your grandparents in person. You could see the longer, could feel the sadness of not being able to give a hug and kiss. But they were also so happy to see you two, and get a box of almost 30 lemons off their hands because their tree doesn’t know how to stop!
It’s getting harder to stay at home, to not long to be around loved ones. The weekly family Zoom meetings are fun, especially since we get to see my aunts and uncles and some cousins that we normally would only see during the holidays. But I miss hugging my mom and dad. I hate having to believe that they might have COVID-19.
But I really, really hate that people are gathering and protesting having to stay home. I really get that they need to work, need to making a living. But I also want Brother to be able to go to school and socialize. I really want to be able to hang out with Nana and Papa again. I really want Nana and Papa to be able to hug you both before you get too big and old for hugs and kisses. I’m afraid this will last so long that they’re going to miss out on huge chunks of your childhoods. I want people to just stay home, to be smart and do everything in their power to not get sick and spread this thing even if it means hurting for a while. Because I’m hurting, too. And I can’t do anything. I see families gathering on private property at more than 6 feet away, but we can’t and won’t do that. Nana’s Myasthenia Gravis makes it too dangerous for us to be in the same place even at more than 6 feet apart. If Nana gets this, she’ll most likely die.
Every day I look out the windows and see more and more cars on the road. Dad goes in to work three times a week and sees more cars on the road, more traffic. It’s good more people are able to go back to work, but our numbers are not going down. Our average is somewhere around 900 cases a day. People are also still dying every day. Dozens of them all across the county. Our mayor made it possible for everyone to be able to access a test regardless of whether they have symptoms or not, so of course our numbers will rise. But it still makes me angry that so many people are out and about and so many cases are still reported every day. I want to be out and about, too. I want to make a Target run. I want to be able to take you to the park. I want to be able to see my mom and dad. But I can’t because I am also at high risk, and maybe Brother is, too.
But at least we were able to let you run around the park after doing the wok-lemons swap. You two had so much fun. There were only a handful of other people and the park was large enough, so we felt comfortable letting you run around for a little bit. Then we went to see one of my best friends. It was strange to hang out from over 6 feet away. We’re so used to hugging when we see one another. It was bizarre to have to believe she and her family have it, just as they have to believe we have it. It makes me feel like I’m accusing my childhood friend of being sick and potentially spreading it, but it really does keep us safer if we practice social distancing even with people we love and trust.
So, here we are, kids, about to enter our 8th week of being at home. Brother is about to start his 7th week of distance learning and will now have 5 Zoom classes a week. He also has more online resources being suggested by his teacher, especially now that they’re reaching the end of their math workbook. We’re planning on getting him his own computer so all of his online schooling doesn’t kill mine.
It’s also Sister’s birthday this week. It hurts she won’t get to celebrate the way she should be able to. On the bright side, she’s still too young to have any firm ideas on what birthdays are. She just understands cake, and will happily eat all of the frosting. But it’s also good she doesn’t yet know because she has a doctor’s appointment on her birthday. Sorry, Princess! Daddy will be taking you since I’m at high risk. It’ll be the first doctor’s appointment I miss, and I can’t tell you how sad and miserable that makes me.
We had one more eventful thing happen in the past 24 hours. An earthquake! Well, it was a little one, a three point something. It just shifted the building one way and then the other and then just stopped. Dad and I waited for an aftershock that never came. The epicenter was not too far from us, but it was just a little quake, so nothing too exciting, but still kind of exciting. Brother has been having bad dreams lately, so Dad has been sleeping with him to help reassure him everything is fine. When the quake came, it woke Dad, but not Brother, or even Sister. Just Mom and Dad. Lucky us.
Anyways, kids, I suppose life has been a bit more exciting lately. Things are happening, life goes on. It isn’t quite as exciting as it should be, but at least we are safer at home. Everyone keeps thinking of May 15 as some magical date, but officials warn every day that reopening will happen slowly and there might be a surge in cases when that happens, but they will be guided by the data. Maybe it’ll be May 15, maybe it won’t. But schools will still be out and Dad will continue to work from home part-time.