Protecting Our Kids

As the school opening getting closer, the cases of COVID due to the Delta variant are surging. Parents in the Fairfax County Public Schools are worrying. They are petitioning to get the school board to offer a virtual option.

As much as I despise having our kids attending online classes, it is a safer alternative. The issue is that I have to return to my office the same time our kids begin their school year, which is two weeks away. I am going to discuss with my supervisor about extending my remote work.

Over the weekend, I talked to my wife the potential of not letting Xuân attend kindergarten this year. I am fine with keeping him at home for a year, but she doesn’t want to since she would have to bear the brunt if I have to go back to the office. Letting Xuân and Đán attend in-person classes is risky. The pandemic is far from over and we cannot let our guard down.

America is deeply divided over vaccination. Before the pandemic, I thought the number of anti-vaxxers was very insignificant. Now I realize I am dead wrong. I stopped following politics in America because of its divisiveness. I only pay attention to policies I care about. Now the anti-vaxxers are taking the divisiveness to the extreme.

I refused to attend our family gathering because many of my cousins have refused vaccination. It took one member of the family who is obsessed with conspiracy theory to convince others not to get vaccinated. I love them and pray for them not to catch the virus, but I can’t put my kids at risk. I hope we can see each other again after the pandemic. Yesterday, a friend from high school shared her story on Facebook, which confirmed that I made the right decision not to attend our family gathering. She wrote:

I’ve been masking since end of February 2020 before any mask mandate or shut-down was even announced. I worked all of my hospital shifts through the pandemic. I drove almost 200 miles a day when the trains shut down. Then I started taking the trains and busses, while fully masked, when they opened back up. I was tested for covid weekly and always came up negative. Masking works really well. I let my guard down recently at a family gathering and let my daughter go about unmasked even though she wasn’t vaccinated. It was stupid of me, but I had hoped that everyone in attendance was vaccinated or not a covid carrier. You should never really just rely on hope. I love my family to pieces regardless of what they believe in. I only wish them health, safety, and happiness. If I had to repeat the family gathering I would have still attended, but would definitely have kept my daughter and myself masked and more distanced. Hind sight is 20/20.

Two weeks ago, I took Đạo and Đán to try out Vovinam. It took place in a small studio close by our house. Many kids didn’t mask up. Except for one master and myself, none of the parents wore masks at the meeting. As a result, I decided to pull them out for now. Our kids are good with masking up. Even our two-year-old Vương wanted to wear his mask because his brothers were wearing them. We still need take more cautions with the high transmissible from the Delta variant.