Covid, Parenting

Weeks 5/6: Us and Them

Originally published April 27 on Medium

They’re protesting because they want to be able to go to the park and the beach. I know, we do too. But we’re going to wait until its safe. Well, I guess they think it is safe. Because there is a lot that we don’t know about this virus so it can be confusing to know what to think. We are trying to listen to all those doctors on TV and read about what the scientists are saying.

Hoax means it’s not real. Remember how we talked about how it can be hard to believe things you can’t see? I don’t know if they think the Tooth Fairy is a hoax.

We might be able to go to the beach this week. No, not because of the protest. Well, maybe, but staying home has stopped it from spreading too much, so they think maybe we can start going out a little more. But we still have to be careful. We probably can’t spend all day there with our chairs and beach toys, but if it’s still hot, we can go jump in the waves. I’m not sure if we can throw the football around. We can go for a walk though. Maybe the police will be there. Definitely lifeguards will be.

No, you won’t be going back to school. That’s still not safe. Outside, we can still be far enough away from other people but not in your classroom. Even with a mask and gloves. You wouldn’t want to wear them all day, would you? Right, how would you eat lunch?

Yes, it would be cool if they announced there was a vaccine and everything could reverse. But it won’t work like that. We won’t go back to normal. We’ll just go forward — to another normal. Remember when we moved and we knew it would be different but we didn’t really know how? Remember how that was a little exciting but maybe a little scary, but mostly exciting? Let’s think of it like that.

In order for it to work, it needs to cover your mouth and nose. I know it’s hot. And uncomfortable. But when you breathe in, you breathe in all the particles in the air. If your nose and mouth are covered, you can stop some particles from getting in. Good question, I don’t know how the mask knows only to let the good particles in.

There could be lots of reasons they aren’t wearing masks. Just like there might have been lots of different reasons people joined that protest. Just like there could be lots of reasons people aren’t staying home. We can only control what we do. You won’t always agree with the choices other people make, but most people are just doing what they think is best. Just like us.

China didn’t make the disease. It just started making people sick there before other places. It would make it easier if we could blame them but this isn’t about us and them. We are all working together. There is no one to blame. Kids all over the world are doing the exact same things as you.

That’s why we have to be careful this week. Some things might be opening up again, and everyone, everywhere wants that to happen. But what would happen if everyone, everywhere tried to go to the beach? Ok, I know that’s impossible. What if everyone in Encinitas tries to go to Moonlight beach? Right, we wouldn’t be able to stay far enough apart and it wouldn’t be any fun. They would send us all back home. Yes, like getting punished.

You know how sometimes when you’re with a big group of kids, and you’re lined up to have a race and anxious to start? You stick your foot out to get a good lead. Then the kid next to you sticks his out a little further. Then the kid next to him a little further. And the next thing you know you’ve all crowded in and started before the coach has yelled go? That’s what this week could be like. So let’s remember there’s no need to rush out ahead. The course is so long and so curvy, we can’t see even see where it ends.

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