COVID19 life

New Year & Moving Forward

January 5, 2021

It’s Day 5 of the new year.

Never before has a resolution failed as spectacularly and as quickly as my 299 minutes of Screen Time yesterday. What can I say — I had a rough day, for various reasons. And so I treated myself to a Screen Binge, with a heavy focus on planner review videos and the like. I think I saw about 38742 ads for Vuori loungewear, so Instagram must have read my mood well (though I didn’t succumb). Better than an alcohol or chocolate binge, I think — no aftereffects this morning thankfully! But I don’t want a repeat today.

I am trying — mostly successfully — to remain grateful that our infections have been mild, which makes us so lucky. I did find out that at least C & G are out of school until they test negative, which could be . . . quite some time. Like, possibly months.

(Their school is aware of CDC recs but wants to err on the side of caution.)

Our nanny is doing okay overall, but is not yet able to return. Hopefully soon, but nothing is certain.

So, here we are: a fresh new year that feels anything but as Josh I remain stuck at home using up leave time with no childcare. If nothing else, yesterday was a testament to the fact that C needs . . . basically a tutor/aid sitting next to him throughout his online school day. An aid with Google Classroom familiarity and a LOT of patience. He is actually learning a lot and has made fantastic progress in reading, to the point where he is starting to be able to read instructions and understand what is up on the teacher’s whiteboard. But he needs help with navigating the system, following the directions, and executive functioning, as many first graders probably do.

Could I have kept the kids home? Should I have? First, I will note that I am not sure it would have prevented us from getting COVID. I’m not sure where the kids got it and it absolutely could have been from school, but also maybe not. Notably, there have been no other identified cases in any of our kids’ classes before or after the fact of our kids getting it, though who knows if another kid was an unidentified asymptomatic carrier.

Second, I will say that I could have kept A & G home. I really could have. They both had reasons to benefit from going to school, but it was different than the situation with C. But I was operating under the idea (right or wrong) that school is a relatively safe environment. Josh and I looked at what other countries were doing. We looked around at what our colleagues were doing. I read Emily Oster’s newsletter which might be flawed but . . . it seemed reasonable and data-driven to me when I read it.

Anyway. I have reflected, talked to friends (some of whom I know are the kind who wouldn’t just tell me what I wanted to hear), and . . . I feel significantly better. Probably better enough to make it through today without a screen binge.

I am never going to please everyone with my choices, especially in this day and age. For what it’s worth, I have chosen to make my journey relatively public (though also for what it’s worth: every detail and nuance is not shared particularly when a story belongs largely to someone else). I also am not the world’s best at letting others’ judgments roll off my back, but maybe this is something I need to work on.

Again, onward and upward. Here’s to hoping that the kids do not test positive for months. I hope everyone else had a better start to 2021.

at least someone is enjoying herself in quarantine.
(this was our back patio and an entire bucket of colored chalk.)


  • Reply Marci Gilbert January 5, 2021 at 7:39 am

    It totally stinks you all got it, but you are lucky it is mild. And stinks about taking time off. My kindergartener and C sound similar, and not going to school would be terrible for him, so school is a risk but staying home would be far worse. Our family is sure of this. We are all fortunate we can make these choices, but hopefully this all gets better soon.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger January 5, 2021 at 7:55 am

      So so lucky. I know. Really even if things are tough that is on the forefront of my mind.

  • Reply Ali January 5, 2021 at 8:00 am

    Public or not, choices or not, it’s not mature for folks to call you out publicly like that other blogger did. I’m sorry about the prospect of months. I hope it is not. Agreed they could have gotten it from anywhere. You did the right things based on what you knew. You will make it!

  • Reply Chelsea January 5, 2021 at 8:04 am

    FWIW, our very-well-respected pediatrician has been very encouraging of kids going back to school here. At least in our county the kids wear masks all day, have spaced desks, spaced lunch tables, spaced recess, lots of hand washing, etc. etc, and is not some kind of hellish mask-less free for all (which I’m sure does go on in some places). And I’m sure he does not make his decisions based on what Emily Oster writes (if he even knows who she is…)

    Again, the distance learning thing seems to work really well for some (I suspect older) kids, but I don’t know anyone personally who hasn’t sent their kids back to school F2F or doesn’t sit with their child all day long, helping them complete the assignments (my peer group has kids 2nd grade and younger).

    I mean, if you’d posted about having a 50-person indoor, mask-less, raging NYE party (which, from Venmo, I think an acquaintance of mind did, yeesh), well, you probably would be deserving of some internet hate ;), but I (obviously from my involvement in that other post) bristle at the idea of considering school (especially for working parents) optional in the way that a 50-person-indoor mask-less raging NYE party is.

    Hope you continue to feel better!

    • Reply Lmr January 5, 2021 at 8:53 am

      Thanks so much for sharing your experience and I’m so glad to hear your illnesses have been mild. I didn’t see the criticism but that strikes me as really unfair. Like you, we’ve chosen to continue to send our kids feeling comfortable with the precautions but knowing there’s some risk. Otherwise, we’ve seen no one for months. It’s a complicated analysis and anyone who blames you when it’s clear from your blog you’ve otherwise been safe is being rude.

  • Reply Catherine January 5, 2021 at 8:05 am

    I hope today goes better for you.

    My three kids are back in school on a hybrid basis because the only options available were either hybrid or fully virtual. I wish they were able to go to school full time because it’s the best place for them from an educational basis. Two of my kids have ADHD, and I’m worried about what they are missing and/or losing not being in a classroom even with the rules that make them think school is less fun now.

    I share that because both options between sending your child to school or having them learn virtually have downsides. I’ve been joking with mom friends that neither choice was a good one and we each had to make a decision that was best for our children between less than ideal options.

    There has been very little, if any, internal spread at my kids’ school. The cases that have been in the school are all mainly external community spread. The one student to student transmission I am aware of probably happened because of an in-home, indoor play date where masks were not worn and social distancing protocols were not followed.

    Don’t let criticism get you down regarding your choice to send your kids to school.

    • Reply Catherine January 5, 2021 at 8:05 pm

      Coming back to reply to myself because I’ve been thinking about you off and on today. I haven’t seen whatever blog post publicly criticized your decision to send your kids to school and I imagine criticize you for doing your job outside the home during a pandemic, but I get a sense of what was said. Personally, I’m horrified at the amount of shaming that people feel is okay when someone is public about a positive COVID diagnosis. Instead of being empathetic, the judgment and mean-spiritedness of the internet come out. I guess it makes someone feel better about their choices and convince themselves the same fate won’t happen to them.

      A friend of mine and her husband (her – late 40s, him – late 50s) are both high risk due to pre-existing conditions. She is a survivor or a rare type of breast cancer diagnosed in her early 30s and he has asthma. They were both working from home, not going anywhere but gas station and grocery store, and only saw friends at a small outdoor, socially distanced gathering on their deck in July. They always wore masks, washed hands constantly, and always used hand sanitizer. They both got positive diagnoses in July, a day or two after the small gathering. She shared the diagnosis on her social media, discussed symptoms, shared that she and her husband had both discussed end of life decisions just in case, and implored people to be careful and take the threat seriously. The amount of nastiness she was subjected to over multiple posts from people she considered friends was unbelievable.

      I guess I’m encouraging you to ignore the online hate. It’s not just you, but it’s so unnecessary. You made the best choices you could for yourself, your family, your patients and your community. Feel better soon!

  • Reply Sam January 5, 2021 at 8:11 am

    One of my favorite takeaways from your blog has been the idea of daily-ish habits. It’s a helpful framework for bouncing back from off days. I hope today is better!

  • Reply Gillian January 5, 2021 at 8:15 am

    I completely understand you decision to send your kids to school! That is not to say it is the “right” decision for everyone, but that it was the best decision for your family. We have a son in second grade who struggled greatly with distance learning last year. It was for him that I felt most strongly about sending my children to school this year.

    It does totally STINK that your kiddos may be home for so long. I hope you get that negative test for C/G ASAP! Hang in there.

  • Reply Taryn January 5, 2021 at 8:17 am

    I’m sorry you’re having a rough time. I hope that you and your family make a quick recovery. Try not to question your decision to send your kids to school. I know plenty of people who made that choice because it was the best thing for their family and it’s good for their mental health. I also want to point out that my friend in the UK tested positive and he’s been working from home the entire time. So sadly it does still happen even when you take all the precautions. Sending lots of positive thoughts your way!

  • Reply gwinne January 5, 2021 at 8:24 am

    Thanks for sharing this, Sarah. FWIW, at this point in the pandemic I barely leave the house myself (not even doing grocery stores), but I’d still send my younger kid (3rd grade, ADHD) to school if it were an option. My district hasn’t been open at all since last March. Glad the cases have been relatively mild, at least.

  • Reply Lindsey January 5, 2021 at 8:27 am

    Wow, I must have missed something but I’m really sorry you were shamed for sending your children to in person school. My pediatrician also supported our decision to send our son to PK. Our girls are doing remote learning but he desperately needs in person care and schooling. My husband and I are both lawyers fortunate enough to work from home but we could not have him at home. I also think people need to stop stigmatizing Covid. Unless you are throwing or attending indoor parties, no one should be ashamed of contracting a highly contagious airborne virus. I know several people who have no idea how they got it, and were taking extreme precautions. My son did get it through day care and the rest of us miraculously avoided it. Good luck to you, I know what a tough spot this is (and the no return without a negative test is a rather ridiculous position to take).

  • Reply Erin January 5, 2021 at 8:46 am

    I’m sorry you had a rough day and I hope today is better! For what it’s worth, we have largely made the same choices as you: my 3-year-old has been attending (masked) half-day preschool, and my 6-year-old has been in person (also masked) to the extent our district has been. For kids this young, virtual school is just rough and mostly dysfunctional – even with my highly conscientious 6-year-old, he’s still a 6-year-old boy! We also have a nanny who is great, but she’s not a teacher. We have chosen to use our entire “risk budget” on in-person school and keeping our nanny, just like you. I don’t find these decisions unreasonable and I’d happily sacrifice dinners out (haven’t even eaten on a patio), pedicures, and the like to keep my kids in school. I don’t feel guilty about that choice, and I feel awful that you were made to feel that way.

    Hoping for better days ahead for your family!

  • Reply Lisa of Lisa’s Yarns January 5, 2021 at 8:58 am

    Another person commenting to say that you shouldn’t feel shame over sending your kids to school. It’s a tough decision to make but we all have to make our own decisions based on our risk budgets. I asked our pediatrician if we should keep our toddler home for awhile after the baby was born and she said to send him back right away. She said it was less likely we would get Covid from him and that he needed to get back on a schedule. So it seems like physicians support the decisions you made. We did have a ton of cases in November when our numbers were terrible here in Mn but we lucked out and did not get it. Thank god! There is no perfect answer to how to handle this pandemic and you can’t completely eliminate risk. Sending our son to school was the only risk we were taking. We are super careful in every other area of life. But the alternative is keeping him home where he gets less attention and watches more screen time than I would like. So we chose school and so far it has worked pretty well.

    Hope the kids test negative so they can get back to school!!

  • Reply MP January 5, 2021 at 9:00 am

    We live on the west coast and our kids have been doing digital learning since March. Not a day, hour etc physically in their school since then. Our teachers and administrators are doing a wonderful job but digital school is not the same. The is no perfect solution, but when a 10 year can articulate just how much they miss physically being at their school, there’s no way this doesn’t have consequences. We would 100% have sent our kids to school if we could based on what we’ve observed-how much they have lost despite very terrific teachers. No perfect solution. In the words of Ted Lasso if it helps, be a goldfish and know your decisions were based on careful consideration of imperfect choices!

  • Reply Elisa January 5, 2021 at 9:18 am

    Hang in there, Sarah. It’s so easy to second-guess yourself, but there’s just risk in everything right now. I’m rooting for your family.

  • Reply Amy January 5, 2021 at 9:33 am

    I was so angry reading the other blogger’s criticism of you. We pulled our five year old from hybrid kindergarten after she asked me one night how to “quit kindergarten.”
    Many tears (hers and mine) were shed trying to navigate school on an ipad! We enrolled her in Montessori school With her brother with the support of our very conservative pediatrician. We also had a baby 9 weeks ago and he said to keep the kids in school-the benefits far outweigh the risks. We too have used our entire risk budget with school-no outdoor dining, pedicures, or playdates….everyone has to do what they’re comfortable with (though my elderly mother in law is getting a massage today-and gifted me one for christmas 🙄)

  • Reply Sarah S. January 5, 2021 at 10:13 am

    I’m so sorry you’re dealing with this criticism over choosing in-person school. I think my son is just about the best online school outcome and it is still terrible for him.

    My six year old boy has a seemingly similar personality to your daughter A and has been in online school since September. He has a great teacher with just the right combination of positive can-do attitude and empathy for the kids. It’s incredibly well organized and he goes to his “office” and does everything independently with a walkie talkie to call us for the occasional tech issue. He is learning and engaged. Online school is going better than I could have possibly imagined.

    He also cries before he has to “go back to school” on a daily basis, usually after his short snack break. He spends all day alone in a room, has zero friends his age, and I worry constantly about the effects of this year on his mental health. We have our three year old in part-time preschool and I would send my six year old to in person school tomorrow if we had that option.

    Your choices seem carefully considered to prioritize truly important risks. Thanks for sharing them.

  • Reply Holly January 5, 2021 at 10:34 am

    I just want to say that I’ve critiqued you in your comments before (and even sometimes agreed with she-who-shall-not-be-named in the past), but jesus that post (and all her follow up comments) was incredibly unnecessary. I’m not saying she can’t vent about covid risk takers generally – and I’m not saying you are not above reproach as someone that puts their life publicly online, such as with the vaccine post – but using you as an example when I think it’s been clear you’ve been trying your best and being thoughtful about things (and are a family with TWO FREAKING HEALTHCARE WORKERS) is just…a really bad choice, IMO. And the fact that she criticizes you for personalizing it when – SHE LITERALLY MADE IT PERSONAL BY USING YOU AS AN EXAMPLE ON HER OWN BLOG – argh I’m so mad on your behalf, lol!

    I think the hardest thing I’ve had to learn in the past year is how to be okay with others’ individual choices operating in a no-win situation, and remembering that the true failure and irresponsibility here is of our institutions and government. I’ve seen even in my own life that there are MANY people who are vocally critical of others’ choices but still think that their particular choices or exceptions are “fine” because…??? EVERYONE is making tradeoffs and choices, and yes it is frustrating as always to see people make choices that you aren’t making (or would love to make but are trying to be good), but the true problem is that those CHOICES ARE AVAILABLE TO THEM and that there is NO INCENTIVE FOR THEM NOT TO MAKE THEM.

    Yes, we should all do our best for the sake of public health in the face of the obvious failures of our institutions/government, but without those institutions there to officially say what is “good” and “bad” and incentivize compliance, it’s very hard to evaluate what another person’s “best” is when you are not living their experience.

    • Reply Ali January 5, 2021 at 1:34 pm

      YES to all this. The idea that your choices are getting lumped in with people who are visiting Disney (in the comments), is insane to me. You all have obviously been very careful and cautious in this. No one out there is living a life with absolutely zero risk, so don’t give yourself too hard of a time.

      My kids are easy around 6 months younger than your 3, and we sent out older two to school (though now they are virtual due to high levels in our area). Virtual school is NOT an option for all, and for many families it it worth the risk. We discussed with our pediatrician (who herself has sent her kids in person). I don’t even think outdoor soccer seems like a crazy risk—but then again, I run outside (unmasked) in our neighborhood. That seems like an acceptable level of risk to me—I know there is a chance I could get sick from someone I pass by running down the street, but the odds seem very low (and certainly much lower than visiting the gym which I did pre Covid). The shame over your decision making is insane to me, and I am sorry you are dealing with it.

  • Reply Cbs January 5, 2021 at 10:56 am

    Oof, sorry Sarah that sounds incredibly rough. I reserve my Covid judgement for people who are getting on planes, holding big family gatherings, dining in restaurants, and generally behaving irresponsibly. I think childcare and education is essential, and if online doesn’t work, it doesn’t work. We’re back in lockdown here in the UK and given the insanely high rates, I don’t think I’d seek out alternative care, even if it was available to me. But in the autumn? I felt no guilt about sending my son to nursery. My husband is essential, I am early on in my career as an academic, and we all find being home a struggle. We don’t have the space or resources for an au pair or live in nanny, and something would have to give.

  • Reply Jill January 5, 2021 at 11:06 am

    Also chiming in to say while I did not see the criticism, I’m another one of your readers who has kids in school in person full time and I have no regrets or shame around that. It is the best choice for my kids and my family. Spring was rough trying to get my kindergartner to learn via Zoom. It’s just not the same. I’m glad we were able to keep him from backsliding over the summer, but I know we were not able to move him forward like his teachers would have done. And I agree that keeping kids in remote learning is not a COVID-free guarantee either. My brother is working from home and his wife stays at home and both my niece and nephew are doing remote learning and they are not interacting with others and his entire family caught COVID at the end of November. Luckily, their symptoms were pretty mild. Hang in there! I appreciate you sharing your journey, and I hope you all test negative soon!

  • Reply Annie January 5, 2021 at 11:26 am

    It’s clear the thing that hit a nerve was criticisms of peoples’ childcare decisions – for me, this has by far been the most painful part of COVID (trying to juggle taking care of my kids, watching them struggle through online school, suddenly my husband and I being responsible for far *more* inpatient care and hours in the hospital as some of the younger/healthier members of our respective departments, suddenly having my usual childcare options ripped away). worse than being exposed to 30+ potentially positive patients per day. Worse than the idea of getting COVID myself or bringing it home to my family. Worse than my employer telling us that we had to work even harder to make up for financial losses in the spring. Much, much worse than working all those hours (with a pay cut for my troubles, as many of us in medicine have taken). I was actually bizarrely jealous of those medical workers that were able to go live in a trailer or hotel last spring; all I could think of was ‘it would be so nice to just worry about myself!’. While I can now see the humor in doing telehealth while locked in my bathroom with my 4-year-old pounding on the door and sobbing, yeah, I’m going to take it personally when someone who is not me living my life tells me I should have somehow done ‘better’. This particularly toxic round of the Mommy Wars is just…too much. Hang in there.

    • Reply KGC January 5, 2021 at 11:37 am

      I am impressed that you can already see the humor in doing telehealth in the bathroom with a crying kid outside the door…I feel like I’d be scarred for a decade before I found it funny! What an awful situation and I hope things have gotten somewhat better for you. But I totally agree that childcare choices seem to be the hardest for people to make and the easiest to judge when someone else chooses differently. I hope that some of these rifts don’t ruin relationships forever, but I fear that they might.

  • Reply Allison January 5, 2021 at 11:55 am

    I rarely post but read and follow regularly. I haven’t seen the other post folks are referencing but I’m sorry if you are feeling guilt. It seems like you’ve made solid risk assessment decisions. I’d be hurt by something similar as well. I hope you all heal soon and the kids are able to test negative as well.

  • Reply Jen January 5, 2021 at 12:08 pm

    So many great responses here and I don’t know if it helps either but knowing you’re an upholder and following along here knowing that you’ve been cautious on travel and social activities and really doing your best – and that is all you can do. We all want to see a clear path to follow which means we’d all be safe from getting sick but the truth is it doesn’t seem that only those who flagrantly flout distancing rules or don’t wear masks are getting it.

    I can definitely sense rising general frustration – even in myself. You did nothing to deserve this. We are all trying to navigate as best we can but there isn’t is a clear check list that means you’ll be 100% safe. and that’s true of life too. But this part of the pandemic seems to be bringing out some hysteria and then the self-righteous, super virtuous who look for every reason to point out how everyone else is failing. It’s not helpful.

    We all want it to be over but it seems the best thing we can do is try to be nice to one another. A big one for me is try not to wade into yelling at people on the internet. No matter how frustrated i feel … i echo so much of what other moms here have posted about our kids being so isolated and worrying for them.

  • Reply Midwest mom MD January 5, 2021 at 12:08 pm

    I think that the choices you made were very reasonable and well-rounded. I had come across other people on social media who avoided sharing their COVID diagnosis until much later due to the stigma, and I never got what that stigma was about until I saw how you were treated online during your vulnerable time.

    I have a question if you feel comfortable answering: Timing and exposure wise, do you think you and Josh got COVID from the kids or an adult that was a close contact to both you and the kids?

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger January 5, 2021 at 12:18 pm

      It could have been either. I don’t think we will ever know.

  • Reply Dominique January 5, 2021 at 12:15 pm

    First off, I have really appreciated your discussion and thoughtfulness around your risk tolerance for COVID here. And it is a thing where the longer this goes on, the more risk for everyone – and the costs of risk avoidance are also higher. I follow Melissa Urban (CEO of Whole30) on Instagram and she had COVID a couple weeks ago and talked about the shame of it in her newsletter. That is to say you are definitely not alone in second guessing your choices and feeling shame around the outcomes. This is a global pandemic and there are basically no good choices.

    • Reply Alexis January 5, 2021 at 10:32 pm

      I’m so proud of you for connecting with everyone in a time where fear can be paralyzing! You’ve had some great memories with family and I hope you can travel soon. I started coughing 12/15 (thought it was the weather) and tested positive 12/20 but tested negative 1/4. I still have coughing and lung pain (have hypertension as well) so I’m hopeful your family will be negative next week 🙂

  • Reply Natalie January 5, 2021 at 12:15 pm

    Sarah, I am also a physician with little ones at home, trying to juggle everything, and my time is limited– I have so much to write but wanted to share two main things in solidarity/support:

    1. I have an MPH and feel passionately about promoting public heath, and I send my daughter (9 yrs) to in person school (hybrid). It is not just a dichotomous stay home and isolate/go out in public and risk COVID exposure decision. There are also very real concerns about children’s mental health and social-emotional learning that need to be factored in.

    2. The criticism you are facing is completely unfounded. I hope you can ignore the noise and remember that you are doing the best you can in an incredibly challenging situation.

  • Reply Emily January 5, 2021 at 12:34 pm

    I am not a parent (and admit I am not aware of all of the criticism you have faced/are facing) but these are incredibly difficult decisions and certainly don’t think it’s as easy as keeping all of your kids home this entire time. We can’t avoid all risk and I do really worry about the drawbacks of staying at home to academic learning as well as socialization and mental wellbeing (in both children and adults!) during this pandemic. I and I’m sure your many other readers have really appreciated your honesty and thoughtfulness regarding this issue. Glad to hear health-wise you’re all doing well and hope everyone tests negative soon!

  • Reply Ali January 5, 2021 at 12:53 pm

    Interesting new study suggesting that in-person school had no effect on covid hospitalizations in most counties. School opening is riskier when covid rates are quite high.

    Virtual schooling so tough for parents and kids.

  • Reply Courtney January 5, 2021 at 12:57 pm

    Sarah – I’ve been following your blog for a few years and have been really appreciative that you are willing to share your real life experiences. I just wanted to send my message of support and solidarity as well. You should NOT feel bad in any way about your choice to send the kids to in-person school. You (and your husband) made a very well thought out decision for your family. And like you said in the post, the kids may or may not have been exposed through school.

  • Reply Catherine January 5, 2021 at 12:58 pm

    As a feminist and an educator, I felt my heart just drop into my toes when I saw that another woman, who, I believe, does not actually know you outside of the internet, felt entitled to single you out like that. Your vulnerability and lack of defensiveness is what makes your writing and podcasts so interesting and helpful. The point she was making could have been made without itemizing and judging your choices. With that said, I’d like to do a little judging myself – I judge you to be awesome! And an inspiration! I can’t imagine thinking for a moment that you have done anything other than make the best choices you could with the information and opportunities at hand. I rarely comment on blogs, but I really wanted to let you know how much respect and appreciation I have for what you do.

  • Reply Kristina January 5, 2021 at 1:05 pm

    Just piling on the love-train. I appreciate your openness, and think that all these decisions are tough and we are all doing the best we can! Please take all the appreciation to heart, and let the other stuff go!! 🙂

  • Reply Jjiraffe January 5, 2021 at 1:24 pm

    I’m so sorry you and your family came down with this.

    Unfortunately, I think everything we think we know about how Covid spreads might need to go out the window, due to the UK variant. Early research looks pretty bad in terms of contagion and spread. It’s already in my state.

    Anecdotally, I know someone who got Covid from going to the grocery store in LA a few weeks back. It was her only interaction with humans in more than a month (she had been ordering groceries before, works from home, lives alone and is one of the most paranoid people about Covid that I know). And yes, she wore a surgical mask, used hand sanitizer throughout her shopping, and not only washed her hands when she got home – she showered!!

    The new variant is scary AF. This vaccine needs to be distributed waaaaaayyyyyy faster.

  • Reply Alyce January 5, 2021 at 1:30 pm

    Ah yes, this is why I don’t blog. Because people get so heated about other people lives and I just don’t want to find myself caught up in other people’s emotions. I couldn’t help but think as I’ve skimmed both of your posts and comments just how emotionally invested people seem to be in everyone else’s decisions, even though its the one thing they can’t control. I continue to think that both sides make valid points, but it’s so hard to accept that there is no one universal, black and white correct answer for everyone, but we really are existing in the grey space here. I try not to get to invested in things I can’t control, and all of the exchanges felt exhausting to me as an unimpacted third party, so I can only imagine that it must have been rough for you.

    On an quasi related note, I find it interesting that you know you have a hard time with other people’s judgment. It reminded me of the exchange we had about your dislike of Celeste Headlee’s book, and made me wonder whether her dislike of some of your key habits for success (like waking up early) felt like judgment that really upped your dislike of the book, even though (as I noted before), you actually do so many of the things she was recommending. I just listened to an interview Elise Loehnen did with Celeste Headlee on the goop podcast, and I was surprised that Elise was very moved by and focused on things in Celeste’s book that barely registered with me when I read the book. That really made me think about how we all experience the same things so differently from one another. Feeling judged is surely one of those things that influences how we experience things.

  • Reply Irene January 5, 2021 at 1:35 pm

    I have commented before that I am home with my kids (and not doing my job in public health) because of our struggles with virtual school. The people who know some of the specifics of my situation are very supportive. However plenty of other people jump to their own conclusions and think I’m lazy or not doing my part. Or being over protective. But it’s really the only option and I have no regrets or any inclination to explain the extent of my kids struggles to anyone. This is really fucking hard and I am trying to do my best. I hope you can be at peace and if you ultimately need to make changes (to other choices like sending c to soccer) that’s part of being human.

    With that said maybe I’m a hypocrite because I did leave a comment asking another blogger to think about the message she was sending when she blogged about hosting a dinner party for 8 women a month or so ago. Maybe I just suck and am as judgmental as anyone else but there seem to be things that are reasonable and things that are not.

    • Reply AHJ January 5, 2021 at 2:49 pm

      there’s a diff between leaving a comment and making a whole post calling someone out. I’m sorry this is so hard–it sounds like you’re doing the best you can. Hang in there.

  • Reply Jamie January 5, 2021 at 2:03 pm

    Long time reader of both blogs, rare commenter and fellow physician mom (and pediatric specialist who cares for COVID positive patients on the regular). Not a fan girl, just a grown ass woman with a brain in my head. We are all doing the best that we can with the information that we have, under the circumstances in which we find ourselves. That post and the cluster that followed it was a shitty, nasty thing to do to someone who is following the recommendations of local public health authorities and pediatric professional societies while working at an essential job, married to someone with an essential job, and taking many appropriate precautions (I also have a baby niece in another state who I have seen very little of, all prior to the pandemic, and it sucks, solidarity on this in particular). Also, to suggest that another physician in a different specialty is not able to decide when her patients can be seen via telehealth, or if they need to be seen in person is beyond the pale. Are you supposed to send an orchidometer to peoples homes?!?! Anyways, just wanted to hop on to voice my support for you and say that I appreciate the content that you put out there, it’s helped me a lot over the past few years!

  • Reply Anna January 5, 2021 at 2:24 pm

    Good for you for addressing the criticism.
    It’s also very frustrating that the criticism happened while you were sick. Like, jeez, the illness is bad enough on its own.

    If it makes you feel any better I know of two EXTREMELY careful people who got COVID. Like, work from home full time, have a micro-pod, no kids, barely socialize, wipe down all groceries, no eating out, etc. Neither know where the f they got it from. Then there are others where its unbelievable that they havent gotten it. Its a weird weird virus.

    I had a scare last week and the psychological aspect of it was so hard– as if I “deserved” what I was going to get due to the “choice” I made. (Turns out my friend didnt actually have COVID thank goodness, but even so most of our contact was outside and masked, but still, nothing is 100% safe). I am known in my group to be very careful– to the point that I have to remind people that I’m not actually risk-free either. Having the psychological burden of covid/covid scare while in full on quarantine is so hard.

    I hope you guys are continuing to recover.

  • Reply Lily January 5, 2021 at 2:24 pm

    I hadn’t seen the other blog and have never read it before but I guessed instantly who it was, just as I can always tell which are her comments on your blog without even looking at the name. This blog and this community of readers is so consistently positive, supportive and respectful – even when calling someone out or expressing disagreement – that her brand of petty snark really stands out. Don’t let it get you down.
    Meanwhile, I’m incredibly grateful for all the wise advice I’ve gotten here – particularly on my specific questions – and look forward to reading more in 2021.

    • Reply Rinna January 5, 2021 at 2:29 pm

      Same…I guessed right away who it was also. Says a lot about that other blogger, don’t you think? Much more than it does about Sarah’s life choices.

  • Reply Rinna January 5, 2021 at 2:26 pm

    Sarah, I’m so sorry for the hatefulness (not a word?) that some people feel the need to spew. I agree with so much of what others have already said, so I will try not to repeat it. (I, too, have sent my kids back to school in person in September, although they are now home because our province in Canada is under lockdown.) I will just add that She Who Must Not Be Named (stealing that from above.- great moniker!) is not somebody I know IRL and so may be a wonderful person at heart. But I have come across her in the comment section of a few bloggers I follow (not just you) and honestly find her internet persona to be overbearing, judgmental and often plain old mean. It must be nice for her to be right so often – to know the way of the world – although exhausting to constantly have to enlighten the rest of the proletariat like she does. I will give you the same advice my grandmother gave me years ago – when coming across somebody as relentlessly negative as SWMNBN, simply ignore whatever comes out of his/her mouth (or fingertips, in this case). Oh, also, if’ there’s a way to block somebody from reading/commenting on your blog, I would do that do. Hope you are all feeling 100% and testing negative as soon as possible.

  • Reply Keren January 5, 2021 at 3:04 pm

    Hope you get negative test results for your kids real soon. Don’t bit yourself up,we can’t control everything and your choices are arw well within reason.

  • Reply Lori C January 5, 2021 at 3:13 pm

    From my perspective you’ve been cautious, if anything slightly over cautious, so I wouldn’t beat yourself up. My kids are in school full time, the school has complied with all recommendations regarding spacing, masks, keeping classes segregated, etc and I feel 100% happy with my choice. There is always risk, it’s just a weighing of how severe and how much risk you are willing to accept. I was somewhat shamed here in the comments a while back so I empathize with what you go through. It must be 10x worse when you are the main discussion topic. But no one commenting really knows 100% of your situation, they don’t know you, they don’t all the factors in your choices, and really don’t have a right to stamp their judgement on it. People can be quick to verbalize their thoughts with a faceless post online. We are all doing the best we can. I give you so much credit for being willing to live your life publicly in a vulnerable way. I am too sensitive!

    If it makes you feel any better, the kids I know that have tested positive (not in my kids school) have been able to produce a negative test within a couple weeks. Hoping same is for you!! Hang in there.

  • Reply Amy January 5, 2021 at 3:24 pm

    Sending you well wishes for speedy recoveries and negatives tests!

    Also to echo those above, I am sorry you’ve dealt with negative backlash. That seems incredibly unfair.

    And finally- Vuori performance joggers are legitimately the most comfortable pants I own. I wish I could wear them every day. Just in case you needed some encouragement in that area 🤣

  • Reply heatherd January 5, 2021 at 3:32 pm

    I was comforted by Emily Oster’s email newsletter when she talked about shaming and testing. Basically she pointed out that there is a certain amount of chance that goes into who gets covid. Even those that do everything “right” can get it. And those that do everything “wrong” sometimes don’t get it. But by shaming those who test positive we are just encouraging folks to not get tested. I applaud you for putting yourself out there. I think others attacking you for doing it “wrong” are trying to provide themselves with a false sense of comfort that since they are doing it “right” they can’t get it. The only counterpoint to this fear-based reaction is for people to put their stories out there. Which you are doing, and thank you for it.

  • Reply mamaMD January 5, 2021 at 3:40 pm

    Hugs to you, Sarah. I’m sorry that you feel such a need to explain yourself. We’re talking about childcare here, not a weekend flight to party in Vegas. Yes, if we all locked ourselves inside of our homes and never left, we would all be much less likely to get and spread COVID. However, this is not something that is feasible for most. We all do our own risk-benefit calculations and try to consider what is best for the greater good while staying sane and healthy as individuals and families. For some, it is sending kids to school. For others, it is continuing to work outside of the home. And on and on. We really shouldn’t be judging or shaming others for their decisions. My husband and I work full-time and we have four children. My older two are in private school. We sent them because (a) we feel comfortable with the precautions in place (b) they are both benefiting from it immensely (c) it allows us to work (d) it is their only social outlet. My younger two are with our nanny. We understand that these are two avenues for COVID exposure, but we have deemed them necessary during a time when we are strict about being away from our families and foregoing any other type of social encounter – including outdoor playdates. This doesn’t make me better or worse than anyone else – it is just the conclusion that we came to as a family. May we all be a bit less judgmental and a bit more supportive in 2021.

  • Reply Tiffany January 5, 2021 at 3:51 pm

    Hi Sarah – I’ve been a reader for a year or so now but have never commented. I just want to say thank you for sharing your life and being honest while being kind. I really appreciate you and your blog, so thanks for continuing to write even though you get criticism. You certainly take it better than I do!
    For what it’s worth, my kids were in full-time in-person school from April to Dec last year (we live in the Netherlands – basically EVERYONE sent their kids to in-person school) and only switched to online after Christmas break. This was the Dutch government’s stance on it in case you’re interested: Anecdotally, in my kids’ school, from April to December last year, only 1 kid in the whole school was infected with Covid and it was because the father was infected. However the number of cases in the country have gotten really high, and the new British variant seems to infect more children, so they have closed schools again.

  • Reply Marina January 5, 2021 at 4:27 pm

    Just sending you another message of support, Sarah. I think your decision to send the kids back was perfectly reasonable, not that you need anyone’s approval. This is all a risk assessment – is there a risk of getting Covid at school? Sure. There is also a risk from getting in the car everyday. And there is a risk to kids who stay home, not to mention the huge loss to society if parents (usually moms) drop out of the workforce, or are unable to fully do their jobs because they’re watching their kids. I don’t blame anyone for getting Covid – it’s a highly contagious disease!! You did the exact right thing once you got your positive results, you stayed home and prevented spreading. I know there’s this magical thinking of “bad things” only happen to “bad people” but it’s simply not reality.

    I hope you all stay healthy and the kids can go back to school soon!!

  • Reply Tierney January 5, 2021 at 4:29 pm

    I think you are doing a great job. One thing that I’d like to say is I feel you do very important, valid work that brings immense benefit to many patients’ and residents’ lives. Sure, you’re married to a surgeon who could financially support the family on his own, but I am proud and supportive of you and the sacrifices you’ve made to take care of peds endow patients and direct residency training.

  • Reply Amy January 5, 2021 at 4:31 pm

    Also for the love of Pete, the AAP recommended children attend in person school! Sorry, done now.

  • Reply BugsMom January 5, 2021 at 4:50 pm

    Delurking to write that I think you were treated incredibly unfairly in that call-out (and it was strangely aggressive, as were her responses to comments on her post) and I hope you are OK. I find your posts measured and thoughtful. Hope you are hanging in there and thank you for your honesty.

  • Reply Sophia January 5, 2021 at 5:14 pm

    The fact that your decision to send your kids to school is being lumped with people going on vacation says everything you need to know about how moms (esp working moms) have been treated during this pandemic. My 3 kids are the same ages as yours and the older 2 are doing in-person private school this year after our (extremely challenging) experience remote learning in the spring and we are more resourced than most families.

    There is a massive increase in mental health crises for kids here as schools closing has uniquely stressed families with young kids in a way that many people are unable or unwilling to understand.

  • Reply Jessica January 5, 2021 at 5:33 pm

    Hi! Thinking of you, because my family is on the tail end of our own COVID and quarantining ordeal. So glad you are healthy and experiencing mild cases. I hope your kids test negative soon!

    A few things:
    1. Enjoy the kid time : ) I’m SO glad my (2.5 year old) daughter’s going back to daycare soon (after 3+ weeks), but I did enjoy being with her
    2. I couldn’t get my daughter potty trained despite quarantine being the perfect opportunity to do so
    3. I had a couple “mental health” days with excessive screen time, etc. and sometimes you just need that
    4. You could have gotten COVID from anywhere regardless of how careful you were so no sense second guessing
    5. Your kids have benefited in other ways from school (social, emotional, mental health) that are also important

  • Reply Michelle January 5, 2021 at 5:46 pm

    Emily Oster has admitted that her data serve her purposes (to have her school-age children back in school). I totally hear you on the “every decision is hard” point, but as a person with a research-based PhD myself, I really believe her to be a trash scientist.

  • Reply Rebecca January 5, 2021 at 7:04 pm

    I 100% knew, just by reading your post, who must’ve posted such hateful ridiculous crap. How did I know? Because every single one of her comments drive me bananas because they reek of entitlement and holier than thou-ness. I am a Covid Icu nurse who has her 3 year old in hospital daycare and is thankful for it every day. Everyone I work with has their kids in some sort of in person school, eats outside with a few select family members and friends and grocery shops masked. We are middle class and don’t have au pairs but have to- and want to- work. So therefore, we need childcare. Your blog is the last blog I read from the healthy living blog days and I appreciate the every day posting and real ness. Please don’t change because some entitled woman thinks it’s not essential to send children to school. Oh, for what it’s worth, we also did outdoor soccer. Gasp. My child is mentally healthy and we have had no outbreaks in our friend group, family, ICU or daycare room. Everyone makes the best choices they can in these circumstances and unless you are being reckless (indoor party example!) I think judgement is silly and pointless.

    • Reply Rinna January 5, 2021 at 9:56 pm

      HEAR HEAR! Every time I see that other blogger comment on this blog or on others I follow, it’s like nails on chalkboard to me. Holier than thou is a great way to express. (As an aside, although I think it’s patently unfair what she said about Sarah, I am enjoying the catharsis of finally being able to say what I really think of that other blogger!)

  • Reply Nanette January 5, 2021 at 7:05 pm

    I’m finding it very difficult to find the right words to acknowledge my frustration that someone would express such unbelievable blame, judgment, and just plain old bullying over such a difficult situation to someone so publicly in such a personal way. We all have struggled in figuring out what is right for our particular situation and families and in fact, there is no definitive right or wrong in any of this re: schooling (of course, for other situations, there are very clear cut rights and wrongs) and we all have to weigh the cost/benefits for our own unique situation and you should never feel the need to defend yourself over this ridiculously unfair and simply mean behavior. We also have been extremely covid cautious but felt that the one area we were willing to take somewhat of a risk was with school for our children which seemed most beneficial for their emotional well-being.

  • Reply Kersti January 5, 2021 at 7:21 pm

    I disagree with the substance of the other blogger’s criticism, but setting that aside, who puts a “friend” on blast like that? Perhaps this is a case of the green eyed monster? Anyway, Hope you guys feel better soon.

  • Reply MommyAttorney January 5, 2021 at 7:51 pm

    I have been a reader of the other blog for longer than I’ve read yours. And I was absolutely appalled (and commented on that post) about it. The same night a friend from HS posted her NYE pictures of a huge indoor, maskless party. That’s clearly irresponsible. Having childcare while working??? Not irresponsible. Taking into account that your child has needs not being met by virtual school. Not irresponsible.

  • Reply Noemi January 5, 2021 at 8:12 pm

    Just wanted to say, I feel you on the how shitty it feels to be called out on someone else’s blog for your choices. I just had that happen to me (I was considering letting my kids spend two nights at my parents’ house after two weeks of increased isolation) and it’s not fun. I haven’t even posted again on my blog since then because I’m kind of over it. You are clearly making careful, informed choices, and just because distance learning works for some people doesn’t mean it works for everyone. You shouldn’t have to explain yourself when you’ve already explained yourself. I was wondering though… you say that you have no idea how you were exposed but I thought you did have a close contact exposure that triggered your quarantine, before you got positive tests back for the kids. Was that not the case? If that wasn’t the case, were you testing your kids regularly? I am wondering because I have been sending my 1st grader to a learning pod twice a week and wonder if I should be getting him tested regularly. Right now I’m the only one in my family that gets tested regularly, but its the saliva test (through my work) which I’ve heard is not as accurate in detecting asymptomatic cases.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger January 5, 2021 at 8:32 pm

      Yes that was the case but i don’t know if the contact got COVID first or the kids (any kid) if that makes sense. I have no idea the original source.

      • Reply Noemi January 5, 2021 at 11:36 pm

        Ah, I understand now. Thank you for clarifying.

        • Reply Alex January 6, 2021 at 9:23 am

          Doesn’t it seem the most likely, given the timing of the positive tests and symptoms, that the sick contact gave it to the kids who gave it to the parents? If the kids were the source (from school or soccer), it is unlikely that it would have take so long for you and Josh to test positive and become symptomatic, 2-3 weeks after the sick contact had symptoms. Not impossible, just unlikely. I say this only because I think it is clear that the sick contact was not the maskless soccer coach, one of their teachers, or one of your patients. So all of the “unnecessary” risks that the other blogger criticized you for seem very unlikely to even be the source of the infection. Even the most cautious of us are not bullet proof for covid exposure- her family could easily be exposed via her au pair, for example. I hope you are all feeling completely better soon!

          • Sarah Hart-Unger January 6, 2021 at 9:40 am

            Well, I’m just hoping to move on from the drama here over the last few days but … for the récord the soccer coaches did wear masks. The kids took them off during play which — if I could have a do over I would have had c mask.

  • Reply Anon January 5, 2021 at 8:15 pm

    Sarah, these comments are turning into unnecessary bashing of the other poster. I’ll assume you didn’t realize how this would turn out (though that’s pretty short sighted), but it’s kind of you to prevent that. While I may not have agreed with the substance of the critique, she is certainly entitled to address your public statements. People are going to disagree with you on occasion, even strongly. If it bothers you, frankly, I’m not sure why you would post these details. You’re not new to blogging. It kind of feels like you posted this latest post to get a bubble of back pats.

    • Reply Anon January 5, 2021 at 8:21 pm

      I was just thinking this. It’s one thing to comment “I disagree with the other poster, and here’s why”-it’s another to suggest ‘a green eyed monster’, or cast aspersions on her character or personality. You absolutely didn’t do that, Sarah, in your original post, but some of the comments are making me wince.

      Also, agree with the above on Emily Oster. She’s an economist who focused on development and health. She is NOT a public health expert, nor is she an immunologist, or virologist. She can package up her cherry picked data to seem as evidence based or data driven as she wants, but she has a clear agenda.

      • Reply xykademiqz January 5, 2021 at 9:54 pm

        Yes. The person everyone’s piling on, both here in the comments and in the comment section of the other blog, is not Sarah. It’s the other blogger. But nobody seems to care about that bashing. Apparently, It’s not really that dragging people is bad; it’s that dragging those we like or agree with is bad, and to hell with everyone else. The hypocrisy is delicious.

    • Reply Anon January 5, 2021 at 8:51 pm

      Typo above – it should say that, it’s on you to prevent the unnecessary bashing.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger January 5, 2021 at 9:14 pm

      I’m sorry, but i disagree. I was really hurt and felt unnecessarily targeted. Yes, I’ve blogged for a long time but honestly before COVID (and before this past month in particular) I have never had to contend with this kind of issue. I left the previous comments up just as I have left yours up.

      • Reply Anon January 5, 2021 at 9:28 pm

        You don’t have to delete; you could ask people not to make personal comments about her. That you don’t see this as your responsibility is telling – and honestly surprising.

        • Reply AHJ January 5, 2021 at 11:15 pm

          Oh please. Get over it. None of this needed to happen this way. Not Sarah’s job to police comments, either. Good grief.

        • Reply AHJ January 5, 2021 at 11:16 pm

          Also, other blogger’s not letting all comments through, which is also dishonest and shady tbh.

          • omdg January 7, 2021 at 2:21 pm

            I let every single comment I received through, and replied to most. I apologize if there was a delay in moderating some of them. I had two busy OR days on Monday and Tuesday.

  • Reply Anonymous January 5, 2021 at 9:51 pm

    this is telling of nothing whatsoever. What happened was completely unjustified and wrong. Why is she expected to “reign in” commenters who are actually speaking the truth? So it’s ok for the other poster to express her judgment and irritation but Sarah is expected to be in charge of making everyone stay friendly? I’m sorry but NO. This was a shitty underhanded call out. Could have been handled MUCH more elegantly by the original poster and gotten her point across more effectively while also just….being a nice human.

    • Reply Rinna January 5, 2021 at 10:00 pm

      Plus, that other bloggers isn’t being named or linked to, so commenters on this blog are being much more kind. I’m kind of wondering if Anon is actually that other blogger 😉

    • Reply Anon January 5, 2021 at 10:00 pm

      When people make personal comments about the other blogger rather than addressing the substance, at this point (60-something comments later), it’s just a mean girl pile-on.

  • Reply Anonymous January 5, 2021 at 10:13 pm

    No it’s just that I really don’t want Sarah to stop blogging. And if it were me I probably would because that’s just me- who needs this shit? But that’s why I don’t blog, ha! I love her blog, her honesty, her perspective and I would hate for this to make that go away. Signed, Not a mean girl, not trying to pile on anything but appreciation for the writer of this blog. That’s all.

  • Reply Rachel January 5, 2021 at 11:00 pm

    Piling on to say the other blogger is so absurd and wrong. I don’t know anyone IRL with three kids your kids ages who kept them home if they had jobs like you and Josh. This other blogger has made comments about her one child and it’s just not at all comparable to your life with 3. Also, people posting saying my middle schooler is doing great with online learning are soooo not comparable to C who is learning to read. There was a poster that posted about how much hand holding is needed when they cannot yet read.

    You are so responsible and objectively. Made the rigjt choices. Thank you for sharing what you can and writing.

  • Reply Elizabeth January 5, 2021 at 11:20 pm

    I also disagree that the comments here are “mean girls piling on.” Not a single person has linked to the hurtful blog post. I have cringed at nearly every one of that blogger’s comments here in the past–including the barbs she throws back at those who have dared to speak up against her negativity–so I googled her user name and “blog” and lo and behold, found it. I see from these comments I’m far from the only person able to figure this out.

    It seems unnecessary, hurtful, and petty to take one family’s positive COVID experience and, frankly, call it out as an example of people being reckless and thus getting COVID (which is NOT my opinion of Sarah; I’m just summarizing the hurtful post)–to me, it’s imperative to speak up against this. With the exception of the outdoor unmasked soccer (which she has said she regrets, in retrospect), Sarah’s family’s behavior has not contradicted with any of the CDC guidelines nor her local mandates. If anything, it seems her family has been more careful than many/most Floridians. Given this, to insinuate that they are to blame for getting COVID, due to their own actions, is just cruel and a form of victim-blaming.

    COVID is a highly contagious disease! That’s why we’re in this mess! There are any number of ways it could have entered their house regardless of kids in school or not.

    And also to suggest that Sarah going in to work is somehow cavalier really took it over the top for me. How dare she deem herself the appropriate judge of whether or not Sarah’s in person work is mandatory?

    So I’m sorry, but no–you don’t get to post nasty comments on a blog over time and then post a public shaming of someone else for getting COVID while everyone else just has to sit idly by for fear of being called a mean girl piling on. If you see something and you think it’s wrong, it’s important to speak up against it. (Which, ironically, is what the other blogger would probably say she was trying to do.)

    Sarah, I’m so sorry your life was highlighted in the other blog in this manner. You have brought a lot of joy to many readers over the years and one loud critic does not speak for us all. I hope you and Josh recover fully and quickly and that the kids get their negative test results soon.

    • Reply Lesley January 6, 2021 at 12:19 am

      I too guessed who it was based on the person’s comments left on this blog. It says something when so many other readers figured it out also.
      Working in a school district as a provider of health services, we are seeing the social emotional effects of continuous online learning for some students. School is more than academics for our children.

  • Reply heather January 6, 2021 at 9:45 am

    Hi Sarah,

    I have a litany of issues with the other blogger’s comments here and in her unkind/unnecessary/inappropriate/shaming post, but ultimately I am coming back to the quote: “Never wrestle with a pig. You’ll both get dirty, and the pig likes it.”

    Onward and upward! 🙂 Thank you for all you thoughtfully contribute. I always look forward to your posts.

    • Reply Shelley Lee January 8, 2021 at 6:31 pm

      I love that analogy! I will have to remember it. .

  • Reply Kelly January 6, 2021 at 1:04 pm

    Hi Sarah, I’m so sorry that you were publicly shamed for your well thought out and extremely challenging choices about how to educate your kids while you were at work this year. I don’t think that’s something that you “ask for” when you put your life online and it is not okay that is happened to you. I love your blog so much and would never want you to be less honest or put less out there to satisfy one person’s opinions. I love how honest you are and I think I can speak for many of us when I say your life and posts are incredibly relatable. I don’t judge any of your choices, and have made many of the same ones myself as have so many others. You have been extremely careful and thoughtful and it sucks that you got covid anyway. I am so glad you all have had mild cases and I hope your nanny is able to come back soon! Sending good thoughts your way!

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger January 6, 2021 at 1:13 pm

      And thank you for the reassurance regarding first grade!!!

  • Reply Ro January 8, 2021 at 10:40 am

    Sarah, I **never** read the other mean nasty blogger but still had an immediate sense of who it would be based on her comments here. I’m so sorry she has targeted you for this ridiculous public flogging. I remain so grateful to you for your thoughtfulness and honesty in sharing your experiences and I have nothing but the deepest respect for the choices you and your family have made.

  • Reply Shelley January 8, 2021 at 6:29 pm

    If someone criticized your for keeping your kids in school that is ridiculous. Kids are in school All Over the Country. And with jobs like yours exactly what were you going to do!?

    My oldest is 18. There is no way he could have done virtual school and stayed in his seat without someone keeping him there! Well, and even then that might not have worked. And that same kid is at work right now – he can do 8 hours in a row at Walgreens! : ) Love the chalk outside. Wonderful.

    And thank you for blogging about planning. Not sure how you do it. But I am thankful!! : )

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