This essay was first published in our semi-weekly newsletter, Climate in the Time of Coronavirus, which you can subscribe to here.
It’s Sunday evening, eight hours before my daughter is scheduled to fly home for spring break, and we’ve just received notification from the small east coast college she attends that a dining services worker has tested positive for COVID-19.
Cue my personal parenting apocalypse.
I jump off the couch and tell my husband to pack a bag. We can’t get sick at the same time, so I inform him he will be staying two blocks away at her grandparents’ house for the duration of our quarantine. In the kitchen, I turn on the kettle for tea, a fitting soundtrack for the pressure building inside my own head.
Neither of us sleep that night. I manage to wait until my daughter’s plane is in the air before firing off a text to her. OK fine, several texts: Wear your mask. Use your hand sanitizer. I make an infographic out of a map of her layover airport and send it over. Go straight to your gate. Stay away from restaurants. Seriously, wear your mask!
The plane lands for her layover and she’s silent. My husband calls her. She’s fine, he s... Read more