5
 
 
  
8:37 PM, Wednesday, November 10th, 2021:
 
Still boggles the mind that this has disrupted three separate school years...
 
 
This will probably read like a defensive entry, but I assure you I'm just trying to get this in stone because looking back I'm certain I'll ask the same question that several friends and some family members have asked: "After all you've sacrificed for Cam, why aren't you waiting until they're fully vaccinated!?!" So here it is...
 
After the full year of Zoom school we already knew they probably wouldn't get that first shot before school. We hoped, but we understood that as long as the adults were all vaccinated and everyone was wearing masks? This was a worthy risk. Kids simply don't spread it in the numbers that adults do (a fact I still don't fully understand, but the science is clear on that one) and again, every adult in the school being vaccinated mirrors what we had done all summer - let them hang with kids as long as the older family members were vaxxed...
 
And then, inexplicably like 2 weeks before school started - the school announces they aren't mandating that teachers and employees are vaxxed. I promptly lost my shit. Look at August. Our kids didn't have the OPTION to protect themselves, the VERY FUCKING LEAST that a school could do was require the adults protect them, but alas - there we were. Having to tell the kids after an entire summer of counting down the days: sorry, not going back.
 
However? This time there was no zoom school... they had "independent study" with a daily one-hour check-in from 3-4pm. On paper, this sounded light years better than the previous year which was a full day with intermittent breaks. We could take it leisurely, even take outdoor trips during the day... and initially we did that. The problem is school got harder in 2nd and 3rd grade and the kids needed individual teaching from Talya for two different grades. Her mother soon came to help but it was really hard. The length that they had been away from school was starting to affect everyone. Having to get everything done by 3pm, which seemed easy, was anything BUT and of course Cam was still determined to get his 10,000 steps every day (something he has now done for close to 8 straight months without missing a day). Throw all that into a pot? Anxiety. Constant, unending, anxiety. No direction. Teacher that grades their work isn't the teacher in the check-in... it's a constant stream of videos and workbooks and the kids need an adult to walk them through every, fucking, moment. I was able to help a few times with Vienna and math, but because of work I couldn't be relied on. August and September were a sunuvabitch and the thought of waiting until January seemed to now be detrimental to everyone's emotional health. Believe it or not, this is the first time that truly became clear as we've done pretty well with the quarantine. But now? The kids were suffering and the adults were suffering...

...and then the magic happened: they announced that they would INDEED be mandating vaccines for teachers and they had to prove it by October 22nd or be fired. And believe it or not, they did indeed fire a LOT of people in our school disrict. Still blows my goddamned mind that EDUCATORS couldn't research mRNA technology without misinformation scaring them. These are college-educated people. How the literal shit.
 
Anyway... at that moment? The following Monday, October 25th, we could've sent them under the exact same conditions we were prepared to in August. However that was also when the FDA was about to approve emergency use authorization and it just seemed silly to not at least wait until their first shot. 7-10 days after that shot? Antibodies are formed and they're at roughly 50% efficacy. Which means they're well beyond what we initially wanted for them to go back. Because of some strange days off - their first day back is now Tuesday the 16th and because of Thanksgiving they will only have 6 total school days until their 2nd shot... so to us, it was a no-brainer. These kids have to go back. We cannot continue this routine anymore.
 
Their fully vaxxed date will still be December 7th... but for all intents and purposes life will return to normal (but masked) on November 16th. A date that will mark over 20 months in quasi-quarantine and I'm already tearing up thinking about that moment.
 
We've made it. And if somehow the kids get COVID before they're fully vaxxed? I will have just written the most embarrassing and irresponsible entry of my life.
 
You guys... isn't parenting in the 2020s the BEST?
 
Adam