Isolating during a quarantine (Provided photo — Diane Chase)

When my son’s college went virtual this fall, we asked him what he wanted to do. Running away and joining the circus wasn’t an option. He needed to find a job, and we didn’t care where it was.

He ended up with an internship in Rhode Island. It seemed to click all the boxes. He got out of our house. He was fulfilling part of his school requirements, and he would be safe. At the time of send-off, RI was not on the list of New York state’s travel restrictions.

Since that time, Little Rhody has become a COVID stew. We watched the cases grow and would check in with him. His internship eventually went remote as well. He spent more and more time alone. It’s been an exercise in patience and planning. 

With his internship ending, we had to figure out how to get him home, quarantine and not compromise the rest of the family. Throughout this learning curve, I’ve always known and appreciated our circumstances. My issue with any of my family becoming sick, quarantine or not, is someone has to be able to stay healthy to take care of everyone else. With this knowledge, we had our plan in place. 

If you are following the rules between various states, the maneuvering can be overwhelming. Rhode Island only tests if a person has symptoms. He did not. 

We are the lucky ones. We were able to find him a place to test, start his 14-day quarantine in New York and then finish it at home. The weather hasn’t been Saranac Lake cold, so we were able to bring back our cure porch to serve its original purpose. His first test was negative. He then had to wait for 14 days to get his second test. If you see him about town, it’s because his second test is also negative. (Yes, there was plenty of group hugging.)

It was worth having a quarantine plan in place. Though most people don’t have a cure porch or even the possibility of a separate room, there are benefits to wondering what your quarantine plan could look like. 

I know he won’t yearn for additional quarantine. He won’t miss the masks and gloves around the house, temperature checks and isolation. The one thing he could be disappointed about is that the personalized meal requests and delivery has officially come to an end. (I’d forgotten young men constantly eat.)

Throughout the process, we saw a lot of people entering our communities who may not be as careful. They may not be taking tests or quarantining. If you, your family, or someone you know has to quarantine and are unable to get food, please reach out. I will gladly help get meals delivered. We are in this together. Stay safe.


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