And There It is

My son Solomon coughed. My wife Katie looked at me.

“I’m sure he’s fine,” I told her. More out of habit.

What habit? Covid habit. Our Covid routine is this. One of our children coughs. Katie thinks it’s Covid. I tell her it is fine. Rinse and repeat.

Solomon’s cough was a whisper on Wednesday. It was a chainsaw by Saturday.

“Should I test him?” she asked me.

“Sure?” I said.

“I don’t want to send him to school on Monday without testing him.”

That seemed fair.

Katie grabbed one of our home tests from the closet. Swabbed his nose. He howled with anger. Fifteen minutes passed. There were two lines instead of one. My heart dropped. I think Katie’s heart dropped too. The Covid Monster in the shadows laughed. Whatever a Covid Monster is.

We gave him another test. Two more lines. We have been some of the most cautious people I’ve known over the last two years. Masks. Sanitizer. Isolation to beat the band. No matter. It had finally happened. Solomon had Covid.

And there it is.


My other son Samson took a test. One line. Negative. Katie and I were negative too. Which is insane. Because the germs spill like wine around our house.

Solomon’s symptoms are mild as I write this. A chainsaw cough that seems to be getting better. He still has enough energy to run around the house howling. And he spent all afternoon on the trampoline. So that’s probably a good sign. Both of our children our vaccinated. As are we. So here’s hoping our bodies are prepared to keep Covid at bay.

I still think all of us had Covid in the winter of 2020. Before people knew what Covid was. Solomon and Samson were each sick for a month. They both had wheezing coughs and fierce fevers. Samson’s doctor thought it was asthma. Asthma that lasted a month. Katie and I each got sick too. My fever spiked one night, and I projectile vomited all over our bathroom. Talk about yuck.

So it might be that our bodies are already prepared to fight off this virus. Certainly, all of us seem okay as I’m writing this blog.


The timing isn’t great. We leave next week for Iowa City. To find a place to live next year. We are homeless as of June 15th. So pressure is on. And the real estate market is a bear. And not the cute dancing kind.

According to CDC guidelines, Solomon should be fine to travel by the time we are schedule to leave. And it seems reasonable to look to CDC guidelines during a pandemic. Regardless of what folks on social media might say. Or yell. So we’ll see how things go.

Over two years of bracing for Covid. Of being careful. And now Solomon caught the darn thing. The damn thing. Probably from school. They ended the mask mandate in our school district a month ago. And we left it up to our kids as to whether or not to wear one. Seems like most people around us are putting the masks away for good. So maybe it isn’t all that surprising that Solomon got the virus.

I’m no epidemiologist. We’ve been safe in response to the pandemic. Because that seems logical to do. Vaccines and masks. And yet here we are.

My sense is Solomon will be fine. That all of us will be fine. But it was pretty sad to see those two lines pop up on the test the other day.

Beware the Covid monster. He’s a wily beast.

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