I f***ed it up, no one else to blame


It has been more than a year since the COVID-19 pandemic hit the USA, since day one we have been careful, following the public guidelines, restricting ourselves from going out if not for basic needs, avoiding crowds and staying away from our friends.

Earlier this year the scientific community surprised us with a number of vaccines that would improve our lives, these vaccines don’t prevent infection but lessen the impact of the virus in our bodies (check the CDC website). While infections among vaccinated people are rare, breakthrough cases exist.

By mid May I was fully vaccinated as many around me were, about the same time a series of new public guidelines were published: if you got fully vaccinated, you can stop wearing a mask outside, go indoor dining, travel or even attend sports events and concerts. Slowly but steadily, people started to get more comfortable, going back to normal life rather than recognizing that now we live in a new normal with new rules.

That’s when I f***ed it up, without realizing it or at least not recognizing my careless behavior, I felt more comfortable walking outside with no mask, getting closer to strangers, indoor dinning and even getting inside packed airplanes and airports for many hours. Now I need to spend 10+ days in complete isolation, fed through a sliding door.

Honestly, with very mild symptoms and my wonderful family around me there is nothing I should be complaining about. Nonetheless, through the clear view of my sliding door I can see my kids lives going on, like water running through my hands. Playing hide and seek, cards, painting, eating, running, screaming and waving. I can see them, I can hear them, but I cannot interact with them, they can’t hear me, they can’t touch me, neither can I.

When I traveled for work I was away for days, their lives kept going on and nothing happened. Today it is different, I can see them going on without me, it is like watching a movie where I’m supposed to be in. This is a very surreal experience, I wonder if this is how it feels when we are gone for good, if there is another place where those that left this world are watching us as we keep going on without them.

Death talk


Yup, you are just 3 months away from your 4th birthday’s celebration and we had the death talk already. Beautiful morning of May in Silicon Valley, random weather as it has been lately, heavy traffic which is a constant in the Bay Area and NPR on the radio.

I was listening to the newscaster, various topics of today’s crazy politics were discussed, you were playing with your brother on our way to daycare. I didn’t know how close you were paying attention to the news; however, as soon as your heard the word “dying” you reacted to it. You told me that dying was not good, I was surprised by your comment and wanted to understand where this came from.

I turned the radio off and paid full attention to your explanation, you said that dying is sad, that at daycare people said so. I immediately understood the situation, a couple of days before I learned that a close relative of the daycare owner passed away.

For many years I have feared losing my parents, probably everybody has that feeling; but for some reason it has been always present in my mind since I was a teenager. I have always tried to protect myself from that moment, I have seen how it has deeply affected people around me and I want to feel “safe” from that.

Anyway, as a parent I needed to hide those feelings for a moment to help you understand that dying is not bad, that life is a cycle where at some point people we love so much have to leave and say goodbye. We may feel sad because we won’t see our loved ones anymore; however, it is very important to always remember all the good time we spent together, the laughs we shared, their hugs and how good they made us feel.

I am sure this is one of many conversation we will have about this topic, and the first of many tough topics that I will face as a parent. How to explain something that I haven’t put my arms around?

At the end of the day, I will figure it out. I will always try my best, I’ll get out of my comfort zone to open any doors for you.

Love you.

A new definition for the word “museum”


A couple of weeks ago we joined the San Jose Children’s Discovery Zoo Museum. Amazing exhibitions, interactive activities, a lot of fun for kids and even for adults playing music tones as we climb the stairs up and down. The membership has its privileges, three adults plus all your kids for a full year, we can bring two guests every day, 50% off general admission on participating museums and more.

It seemed to be a great idea, what is better than spending every weekend with your kid playing around in a Musuem? The first day was a huge celebration of Día de Muertos, we enjoyed great story telling, traditional dances and music, including live mariachis. We were all excited about our new membership, let’s come back every weekend we thought.

Today, as we were showing off our membership card at the main entrance, like we were VIP members of a Yatch club, BAM! What is this? Is this BuyBuyBaby? Is there a stroller sale here or what?

My senses went to DEFCON 1 immediately, nuclear war is imminent. This place was packed like a parking lot in a playoffs’ football game, strollers all over the place, small, big, for twins, all possible brands and colors. How bad  can this be… I thought. Let’s go upstairs to the infants’ section, that’s going to be better.

 What? I felt trapped, without oxygen, like in a coffin.
Who cares? I thought again, this is not for me, this is for kids and she will enjoy it. And she did, she played with everything, the dinner set, the carrousel, the tunnel, stairs up and down, huge plastic cubes, she had a blast. What about me? Avoiding crowds, staring at mean kids pushing my baby, with my face of “get out” to those taking things away from my daughter’s hands, having a blast too.

It was not as bad as it seems, mom, curly hair and I spent an awesome day together. I would do it any day, this is priceless and I’m sure this is creating those experiences that make our live together the best.

If you ever have the opportunity to join a children’s museum, go for it, these are the things worth living for.