Wednesday, April 14, 2021

March 2021 - Vaccinations, and the end of Grandparents Daycare

March 7

We have both gotten our first and second vaccines. We both got Moderna. We were just lucky. Our PC is through Ridgeview Clinics. We chose her (and Ridgeview) because their hospital is in Waconia, but they have a clinic in Excelsior, so it was convenient to where we lived while we built the house, and also after we moved. Because Ridgeview serves a semi-rural area centered on the western suburbs of Minneapolis, it seems like they were able to distribute their allocation of vaccine a little quicker than some medical centers closer to the city. Sarah’s mil, for example, wasn’t having any luck getting an appointment through her PC. She finally got on the Vaccine Hunters Facebook page for Minnesota and discovered that she could get an appointment through the Walmart in Brooklyn Park, so that’s what she did.

When the vaccine first became available we signed up for the lottery but didn’t have any luck that way. Next, when Minnesota published a list of all the vaccine providers I put myself on the list for as many as I could. Then we were able to get the vaccine through Ridgeview. But in the past couple of weeks I’ve also gotten a few emails from places around Minnesota letting me know that I could make an appointment through them. Fortunately I don’t have to go that route, because they were all pretty far away. I know some people have been traveling hundreds of miles in order to get a shot. So like I said, lucky.

Neither of us have had much in the way of a reaction to the shot. The only thing I had with the first shot was a sore arm. Lee didn’t even have that with the first shot. With the second I felt sick for a day. I didn’t run a fever, but I just didn’t feel well, and I was freezing! Lee had a sore arm with the second shot, and that was it.

Now we wait two weeks and then we can consider ourselves fully vaccinated. I want to do something to celebrate, but what? Maybe there’s a restaurant we’d like to go to that has those yurts outside to sit in? I don’t really feel like sitting inside a restaurant, since you still have to wear a mask except when you’re eating. 

A couple of nights ago I re-watched the movie Contagion. I saw it when it first came out, back in 2011 and thought it was a good movie. Up until now, the thought of watching it just seemed too depressing. But now, with the light at the end of the tunnel hopefully approaching I was curious to see what I thought.

 I enjoyed it, if that’s the right word. I enjoyed comparing the movie to our reality. Several things stood out. In the movie the R0 number was crazy, like 6, which is insane. And it was very lethal, like 25% of the people that got it died. People were dropping like flies, and quickly too. People panicked, sort of like some people did a year ago, but it really got out of hand, with looting and general civil breakdown. I’m not really sure why, except that it made the movie more exciting I guess. They were tossing around numbers like 25 million dead world wide. And although it spread both through aerosols and surfaces, people using gloves and masks were very hit or miss. And because it hit people indiscriminately, once they had a vaccine they used a lottery system to allocate it, and id bracelets to indicate if you had received the vaccine. It was very interesting, I’m glad I finally watched it.

You know, when it came out, scientists were saying that it’s not a matter of IF something like this could happen, it’s a matter of when. But I remember thinking “nope, not going to think about that, because it’s just too creepy.” And now here we are. Oh, there was also an disinformation campaign in the movie, with this disreputable guy touting “forsythia” as a cure, and getting a bunch of people to believe him! At least he didn’t suggest injecting bleach!

March 8

Today is a Kirby day and he has reached a new milestone over the weekend. He can get from his belly back into a sitting position! This is such a handy thing to be able to do, I’m very happy for him!

He’s at a stage where he understands a lot so I’m talking to him a bunch. He smiles and says “gah! Gah!” Conversationally. It’s great.

March 14

This morning I signed up for a live in person race! Normally I wouldn’t add a race to my calendar in the middle of marathon training but this is different. I haven’t raced in person in over a year and I just want to! And really I think its not a bad idea to have a real race under my belt before I run Grandma’s in June. There’s all the race prep details and the actual racing to remember. I’m a little rusty, plus I do have some hesitancy about going out into the world in spite of being vaccinated. 

So on April 24th I’ll race a 10k along the river in Minneapolis. I’m both excited and nervous, already!

I also went ahead a booked a hotel for Grandma’s. We were going to take the RV to Duluth like we did last time but right now they’re saying no spectators so it would be pretty boring for Lee. I’ll be fine by myself. I know a lot of people that have signed up for Grandma’s. Of course most of them are twice as fast as me but maybe I’ll see them before or after the race. At any rate  I’m staying in a Hampton Inn in Superior, about 10 minutes from Duluth. Grandma’s makes you take a shuttle bus to the start so its not that big a deal where I stay and besides I’ll have a car. 

March 15

Apparently Kirby is pulling up but I haven’t seen him do it here yet today. He got up on his knees though, trying to get the books off the bookshelf. I told him “no” and he frowned but stopped. I told him to wave bye bye to the books, and he did! That was pretty funny.

He is so, so busy. Dumps his toys out, plays with them. Scoots down the hall and slams the doors on the Tibetan chest. Scoots into the living room and gets out all the dog toys and balls. Experiments with the books. Goes to the screened porch door and pats the glass. I give him a bowl and some measuring cups and a spoon and he loves that for a while. Then it’s time to change diapers, eat something or have a bottle, take a nap. He doesn’t take long naps, maybe an hour if we’re lucky. Then he’s raring to go again. 

We are babyproof for a crawler but not a walker. He can’t manage the stairs yet, but he’d like to so we need to put up the baby gate soon. He’s so much fun though.

March 20

Thursday was the last day of Grandma and Gramps daycare. I am surprised by how sad I feel. I honestly was looking forward to it, not having to get up at ass o’clock to run, having more time to do the things I want to do. I keep thinking of the Prince breakup song, “Nothing Compares to You”. I’m going to miss them! I’m goin go miss getting to watch all the changes happen live in real time. They are at an age when every day can bring something new. And they are such an interesting combination of sweetness and obstinacy.

But I will be happy to be able to revert to being more indulgent and less the enforcer. And starting in May we will have one of them every Friday. Its mainly a matter of getting through this new adjustment.

Navigating this new stage of the virus is confusing too. They will be in daycare, getting exposed to new germs, and potentially exposing their parents to the virus. I will feel better on that count once Sarah and Erik are vaccinated. Lee wants to travel for work a little, I want to run live races. What risk we pose to other people at this point is unknown, but I hope it will become clearer over time.

March 25

We’ve been sans kids now all week. I’m glad, but I miss them like crazy. We’re going over to Sarah and Erik’s for dinner tonight, our last Spoon and Stable cooking class. We volunteered to pick the kids up at daycare and I can’t wait.

Leo had one rough morning at daycare and now he’s doing great. It’s been harder for Kirby. He’s never been around anyone else except the people in our quarantine pod and Sarah said he was very sad when she left him on Monday. I told her to talk to him and tell him that she will come back because even though he can’t talk yet he understands a lot. I hope he recognizes us with our masks on.

March 26

We picked the kids up from daycare last night. Lee went to Leo’s room. He said Leo was intently playing with a fire truck (of course) but when he saw Lee he dropped everything and ran to him and hugged him in delight. I went to Kirby’s room. The teachers remembered me, which was nice. Kirby sort of knew me and sort of didn’t. I think I sounded and smelled like meemaw, but the mask confused him a little. He’s doing better. He took an afternoon nap yesterday, although short, and he wasn’t quite as upset when his parent’s dropped him off. But by evening he is really tired. When I took him out to the car and took off my mask he gave me a big smile, like oh there you are! Babies.

Everyone was quiet in the car, but when we got to their house Leo became very excited and chatty. We divided our duties. Lee played with Leo, Sarah fed Kirby, and Erik and I made dinner. This was very backwards from our normal mode, but it worked.

The dinner was mushrooms with hand made gnocchi. I had never done this before, but Erik had so he had an idea of what and how to do this. The instructions were confusing and intimidating so we turned the video on for the gnocchi making part. 

We were supposed to do something with a pastry bag and string but in the video he just used a knife and we ended up making long worms of gnocchi dough ona cutting boardcutting them on the board with a knife and pushing them into the boiling water with the knife. This worked and our dinner was delicious.

Kirby went to bed before we ate, but before that he was crawling around. After a couple days in daycare he started crawling normally. This is funny, Leo did the same thing until he moved from the baby 1 to baby 2 room and watched the other babies crawl around properly. But if Kirby wants to move quickly he reverts to the army crawl method still.

It was so nice seeing them! Leo gave us big hugs when we left and we'll see them again on Saturday for Passover.

March 31

March was a good month, even though I miss the kids, I’m glad to have my freedom back. We had a little birthday party for Kirby on the 20th. His birthday was the 29th. Pandemic baby. He loved the wrapping paper, Leo absconded with his new toys but Kirby didn’t care. Sarah made a baby buffet, pigs in a blanket, little sandwiches, fruit. We all loved it. And the smash cake was hilarious. He licked the icing and tried to take a bite but it keep sliding away. 

The kids survived their first week of daycare. Kirby struggled with bottles and naps, but he’s adapting. Leo is shy, and struggled with separation from mom in the morning but he’s getting there too. I’m looking forward to May when we will start doing Fridays with one of them each week.

Now that I’m vaccinated I’m slowly emerging from hibernation. I’ve gotten a real hair cut, a pedicure, and had my brows shaped and dyed. I even went swimsuit shopping! But Lee just mentioned that we’ll have to get food at the airport for lunch and I got the heebie jeebies. Oh well!

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