life Work


November 12, 2020

Just ducking in for 5 seconds to admit that YES, I too get overwhelmed and behind sometimes, and YES — today is one of those times.

I can see the light at the end though. And my planner helps 🙂

G sleeping before 10:30 pm would help too. But at least we are all currently healthy.

PS: Regarding the discussion in the comments on post-holiday school plans: to those planning on doing remote school the week after Thanksgiving – it’s an interesting idea. A full week at home afterwards would provide a 10 day buffer. Will have to consider pros/cons. I guess I haven’t thought of school as a super high risk environment but I recognize it’s definitely not 0, either.

I will admit I do think this set of holidays is going to be trouble. The vibe I get from friends is that they are “over” the restrictions. While I have been sending my kids to school and we’ve been going to appointments (dentist, eye dr, etc) — I feel like a non-outdoor family gathering (complete with long meal served at a communal table & maybe some out of town travelers!) seems like the highest possible risk combination. Multiply that risk times current rates and how many gatherings are likely to happen in this country around that time and . . .yeah. Not ideal.

Anyway. I also get having a lot of sadness about a holiday season without these gatherings. I feel like it’s extra bittersweet for us this year as G is finally old enough to not require one on one monitoring – how she would love to just run around with her big cousins! And I could . . . quasi relax and talk without being interrupted every 30 seconds (. . . maybe). But I’m sure it will still be fun in fall 2021.

On an unrelated note C needs glasses

I spent hours I didn’t really have this week taking the kids to appointments. But we have now selected an orthodontist for Annabel, and Cameron will be able to see the board (?screen) in front of his class. $@&#^!. Next week WILL be better.


  • Reply Grateful Kae November 12, 2020 at 5:44 pm

    Just got your post in my inbox at the same I got an email from our private school principal stating that she has decided to go virtual only from Thanksgiving through January 11th to cover the whole holiday season (we’ve been back in person since early September). UGH. Cases are super spiking around here in Wisconsin, so I guess it makes sense as a precaution, although fortunately there have been NO issues at our school. I’m disappointed, because I’ve been soooo happy to have the boys back in school. Life has finally felt “normal” in that regard and they’ve been thriving at school. But I also agree that it’s likely the holidays are going to be a disaster…people getting together, etc. So I understand the reasoning and I suppose it’s probably for the best.

  • Reply Lisa of Lisa’s Yarns November 12, 2020 at 6:09 pm

    We are not celebrating thanksgiving or Christmas. It’s not worth the risk with me being high risk and having a new born. Our case counts are so high here and the positivity rate is above 10%. A lot of schools here are going virtual through January, partially because so many teachers are out due to quarantining from exposure. I think it’s best to be extra cautious to protect the vulnerable… but I know it poses a lot of challenges to parents who need to work and help with school.

  • Reply omdg November 12, 2020 at 6:14 pm

    We are all virtual here, but from what I understand many schools that were in-person or hybrid are transitioning to virtual given the increase in cases and hospital burden. There may not be a lot of evidence that schools are sources of superspreader events, but 1) contact tracing in most places is a complete joke, 2) many children have only mild symptoms, and so never get tested, 3) many, many people are avoiding getting their kids tested because they don’t want to have to deal with the repercussions of a positive test, and 4) if they do carry the virus home they expose their parents (and maybe grandparents), who expose their coworkers, so potentially it is a pretty big deal. This is especially the case since there seems to be no plan to close any businesses, ever. I also suspect the timing is happening to mitigate damage from Thanksgiving family gatherings. Anyway. Finding an orthodontist is still on our to do list, but given how things are around here right now, one that I am planning on putting off for a few more months.

  • Reply Jessica November 12, 2020 at 6:24 pm

    We have been in person since august and our school is also going virtual from thanksgiving through January 11 to avoid extra spread around the holiday season.

    So far our schools (I have one in high, one in middle, and 2 in elementary) say there is no evidence of spread in the schools, but there is no way they could possibly know that. Four of my 6th grader’s teachers currently have it. IMO, there is no evidence of spread at school because they aren’t testing or tracing in any widespread way. No one has to quarantine because everyone wears masks. I have gotten at least 10 emails in the last two weeks that one of my kids was as direct contact but they could still go to school.

    I really hope they can stay in person, but I would feel better about it if there was more testing especially with the older kids.

  • Reply Sara B. November 12, 2020 at 8:01 pm

    Ugh this week is a downer. Maybe it’s the rain from Eta, in addition to everything else. Today I’m dealing with my 2y/o’s second febrile illness in 10days, so she got another CoVID test. (The last was negative.) I have no idea how she’s getting sick – none of us are, and she doesn’t go ANYWHERE, the 5y/o is in virtual school. I agree – most everyone else I know is returning to “normal” – i feel like we’re doing the right thing, but this week it’s easy to feel resentful and mike it’s not worth it when my kid is sick even though we are really distancing.

    • Reply Irene November 12, 2020 at 11:15 pm

      Just wanted to thank you again for being so open. I also feel like so many people are “over” COVID and just behaving stupidly. It’s nice to hear other people trying to be careful and remind myself to stay strong.

      I am REALLY dreading this winter. Not sure how we will be able to do any of the distanced/masked interactions that have been keeping us marginally sane thus far…

  • Reply Anonymous long-time reader November 13, 2020 at 12:20 am

    I’m not normally very open about health issues, but I really wanted to write to urge everyone to stay the course with social distancing and mask wearing. I was very cautious about covid from the beginning and had an extremely small bubble of basically just my family. But I made a mistake and trusted one person to be in my house without a mask and ended up getting covid… which turned into long-haul covid. I was scared about getting covid before — but I also believed if I did get it, the likelihood was that I would be ok. I’m in my mid thirties, had a busy career, a toddler, and exercised regularly. I’m thin and I eat healthy. I had no underlying conditions and I’m probably so similar to many other people who read SHU’s blog. But after getting sick, I spent two months basically bedridden, worrying that I would never leave my bed or be able to care for my child again. Four months later I still cannot walk a half mile, work, or exercise. No one can really tell me if and when I’ll get better or even why this is happening to my body.

    I’m so thrilled about the news of an effective vaccine, but it also makes me so sad for myself that in the grand scheme of things, we were so close (6-12 months!!) from being able to get vaccinated, and instead I got sick in a way that could change the rest of my life. I worry I will never hike or exercise or run or even work full-time again. I’m not sure when I was healthy I could have contemplated such a massive shift as a result of getting infected. (And of course I realize that for those families who were so unlucky to lose a loved one, my situation is enviable, so I also have to be grateful to be where I am.)

    But please, when making decisions about the holidays, protect yourselves first. I’m sure there will be lots of family pressure to get together and you might feel guilty for your kids to miss out on the holidays. But you will be giving your family (and yourself!!) the gift of your health for the rest of your life and the chance to make many more happy memories in the future. I’m sorry for such a long comment, but I would love to do anything I can to make sure that other people stay safe for just this last chunk of time. It’s like the end of a marathon. I promise you’ll be glad you hung in there later.

    • Reply CBS November 13, 2020 at 5:42 am

      Oh anon, I teared up reading this. I am so, so sorry you and your family are going through this, and this is such an important reminder that none of us know how this might impact us. I hope you are feeling supported during this time and see some improvements soon.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger November 13, 2020 at 6:05 am

      Thank you so much for sharing. I am so sorry you are going through this — cannot imagine and hope that long haul means months but NOT years — yet at this time it must be so scary not to know. Stories like this really are powerful and may change others’ behavior (including mine) so I really appreciate your comment. Sending virtual hugs and healing thoughts.

    • Reply A. November 13, 2020 at 1:04 pm

      THANK YOU.
      I hope this comment helps people who are «over» a f*** terrible virus to just WAIT a couple extra months before sharing the fun with loved ones. Patience and discipline are my two words regarding this season of life.

    • Reply Ali November 13, 2020 at 3:57 pm

      I got covid in late March and also had a slow recovery. I was sick for a month with basically no improvement. then, I got steroids and felt better immediately. It was like a miracle cure (though I did sleep for like 24 hours when I stopped the steroids 🙂
      I hope you find a treatment that works for you. It’s so tough

  • Reply CBS November 13, 2020 at 5:44 am

    I miss my family desperately but I’m glad they are far away so there is no pressure to see anyone. No thanksgiving here, but we’re planning a very quiet Christmas as a family of three, with perhaps some wintry beach walks with friends who are also spending the holidays alone.

  • Reply Melanie November 13, 2020 at 9:03 am

    We are still virtual here in Arlington, VA despite many surrounding counties already back in a hybrid situation. We were supposed to go back this week but it was delayed until 2021 due to rising cases here. I don’t understand why bars, gyms, etc are open but schools are not? I truly hope kids can go back in Jan or Feb.

    • Reply Irene November 13, 2020 at 9:15 am

      Our county is just now starting to discuss criteria for what a return to school even in hybrid would look like. Definitely nothing until 2021 and probably not the rest of the school year based on the metrics they have put forward. Meanwhile cases are rising and both is being done. I am beside myself with anger much of the time that this is the case when as you said restaurants and other very non-essential businesses are still open fueling this pandemic. This whole situation has been a giant flaming middle finger to kids who are struggling and their working (or no longer working!!!!) parents. How is this reality.

      • Reply Irene November 13, 2020 at 9:15 am

        *nothing is being done

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