Since DH’s sister was expecting (and has since had) twins, DH’s mom has gotten an apartment in her town. Her plan is to spend most of each week there so she can help SIL out with the four kids, now so that SIL can drive to the hospital BIL’s town every other day to be with the babies and give them her breast milk, and in the future with the babies since SIL has very little maternity leave. and will have to go back to teach a limited number of special needs students in person in December.
DH’s mom is high risk for covid complications. She has diabetes, she’s missing lymph nodes from metastasized breast cancer, manages with medication high cholesterol, blood pressure, etc. etc. etc. Just a whole host of health problems. DH’s dad is in pretty good shape (he’s a hunter with no major health scares in the past other than a bum knee and back problems), but they are both over 65.
Before the babies were born, MIL had said that we’d probably want to not visit at Christmas because it would be too high risk for the babies, but maybe we could do something after Christmas.
Since then, the babies have been born and MIL has noted that SIL’s family has been taking zero covid precautions. They act as if there isn’t a pandemic going on (Update: I don’t think this is entirely true because SIL sent pictures of nephew at a boy scouts meeting wearing a mask… though also she sent a picture in front of the elementary school first day with neither of the older kids in masks, so…). And to be fair, they live in a small town with very few Covid cases, so this is probably rational. Because of this MIL has said well, maybe we could all do Christmas together in SIL’s town. But not at SIL’s house because it is too small.
DH countered that even though it’s pretty safe in SIL’s town, we’re still in a Redzone and he would feel terrible bringing Covid up from the South and infecting someone from the midwest. The only way he could think to make it work would be to travel to BIL’s town and rent an Air BNB and then just quarantine there for a couple weeks before seeing his family and that didn’t sound great.
This weekend, BIL noted that they’d spent a lot of time this past week doing boyscout activities and their (legally blind) daughter was back in person school although their son is still doing virtual schooling. Out of curiosity, I looked up their covid rates and… they’re pretty much the same as ours. (They’re also in a town with a state university.) On Sunday they drove over to MIL’s apartment and spent the day with her. We would be no bigger risk to MIL than they are… possibly less so, assuming we manage to avoid picking up an infection while traveling to the midwest.
Drive between SIL’s town and MIL’s town: 4 hours
Drive between BIL’s town and MIL’s town: 3 hours
Drive between SIL’s town and BIL’s town: 1 hour
Drive between us and MIL’s town: 12 hours (flight + driving is generally 5-8 hours)
Drive between us and SIL’s town: 16 hours (5-7 hr flights + 3 hours driving)
Drive between us and BIL’s town: 15 hours (flights, 7-14 hours, very little driving)
I’m still concerned about toilet plumes. There’s still, of course, risks to us. It’s possible I shouldn’t be worried since DH is in good health (knock wood) and as far as we know kids aren’t that affected (though we still don’t know about long-term complications). But if anything happened to DH I would be devastated. I’m somewhat high risk with the PCOS, but not as much as MIL.
So I don’t know what to do. I have no real need to see DH’s family (though also I don’t have any problem with it– they’re good people). DH is very worried that he will inadvertently kill his mother. Especially since when she’s gotten a regular cold or the flu over the holidays from the grandkids she’s gotten very sick from it. I can’t think how to make the logistics work since it’s such a long drive, unless we stop in MIL’s town for the night, which adds 3-4 hours to the total drive.
How are you handling the holidays this year?