Ten years ago, I blended my craft-loving, Girl Scout leader “always be prepared” skills with my family medicine physician experience to create a practical high school graduation gift- a college first aid kit. That first kit had basic essentials for cuts and colds, a thermometer, an ACE wrap, and a few assorted remedies for seasonal allergies, migraines, and heartburn. I stuck a little index card inside that had a few tips about when to use what (like Tylenol vs Advil). Each year, I added more items and instructions, as our friends’ kids began using these kits and texting me for … Read more
Anxious about sending your child off to college in the midst of a pandemic? You’re not alone! Whether this is your first (or only) kid to fly the nest, or perhaps your very last “baby” leaving, COVID19 concerns may be lurking in your brain or keeping you up at night. If so, read on, because I’m sharing my answers to a bunch of parent questions and concerns brought to me by Suzy Mighell, creator and founder of the popular blog and lifestyle brand EmptyNestBlessed.
- Should I be worried about COVID and sending my child back to a college campus
As our quarantine days blend together and suddenly slip by, you’re making a list and checking it twice…because especially if this is your FIRST kid heading off to college, you want to be sure you’ve included every critical item. The running monolog in your head continues…
- Twin XL (Extra Long) Sheets? Ordered on line…Check.
- Command Strips in every shape, size and strength? Check. (Much bigger deal for girls vs. guys, but this is the only way to hang stuff on walls.)
- Dorm Bed Risers? (I highly recommend the ones with extra outlets.) Check.
- Chargers, fan, laundry bag,
Graduations certainly look different this year, and many question marks remain for the fall. How will be dorms function? Will there be football? Large lecture halls? Schools know few specifics, and we definitely can’t control it. Since this uncertainty breeds frustration, let’s talk about what we CAN control. Start with readjusting the focus away from the missed proms, shows, banquets and ceremonies- not to minimize those losses, but to shift the view and push the momentum forward. Begin actively preparing for and engaging with your new school and community with these six summer assignments:
- Make a list of AT LEAST
Long before the CDC officially recommended wearing cloth face coverings, people were buzzing about masks. “N95” and “PPE” (personal protective equipment) were two of the first words in our new Corona vocabulary, and by now everyone knows these precious masks are in very short supply.
Meanwhile, the medical community keeps repeating that wearing masks helps prevent sick people from spreading their germs to others, but these masks won’t protect healthy people from catching the exact same germs. Anyone else confused by this? Isn’t it the same mask on a healthy or a sick person? Why would any mask block germs … Read more
Online classes have begun, and the learning curve is steep for students, teachers and families as we ALL adjust to our re-nested COVID lifestyle.
PARENTS: Being a student should STILL be your kid’s number one priority. Yes, this is a pandemic, and each family has different needs, but globally we need to adapt to living a bit in tandem with our young adult children, respecting their typically shifted, later sleep/wake cycles and understanding that our family meal times may conflict with their classes, study groups or virtual hangouts. Time zone changes from out-of-state schools double this challenge.
STUDENTS: Be … Read more
We know COVID19 has trashed your spring semester, and all the fun and truly hard-earned events you’ve looked forward to have been swiped out from under your feet.
High school proms, musicals, concerts, banquets, spring breaks and even graduations are cancelled.
Ditto for college students, but add in losing internships, studying abroad and oh yeah, real jobs that were supposed to happen at the finish line.
And all of you are facing the reality of online learning, dreading technical frustrations with internet connections, lack of access to necessary programs that ran on computer labs, dealing with … Read more
Should I be worried?
The random texts started weeks ago, but now it’s constant. Friends, colleagues, and loads of fellow parents (especially of college students) are texting me- “Are YOU scared? Is it time to panic? Or is this simply media hype? What do we do about Spring Break? Is Mexico safe? Why the heck is our kid’s university going to online classes? Are you kidding me? We’ve paid a fortune for their education!”
My friends know if they ask me a medical question, I’m going to answer straight up. Along with a side helping of grief if they … Read more
With or without CORONA, Spring Break is here and students everywhere are gearing up for a week-long party. In addition to focusing on hand washing (you know the drill- wash early and often, scrubbing for a full 20 seconds with soap and water or sanitizer), be aware that alcohol-related injuries are currently far more deadly than COVID-19. Over 1500 college students die each year from alcohol poisoning, motor vehicle accidents and other alcohol-related injuries, and not surprisingly, we see a spike in these fatalities during spring break at popular destinations. Not to mention the hundreds of thousands of alcohol-fueled physical … Read more
On planes, trains and buses; in grocery stores and malls; and most definitely walking across universities, surgical masks appear to be the latest fashion accessory. Mind you, few people are wearing them correctly…but I digress. People are understandably worried about this new Corona Virus, for which we have marginal understanding, no vaccine, little effective treatment and no cure.
First things first, though, let’s start with the name.
On Feb 11, 2020, the World Health Organization officially changed the name from Corona Virus to COVID-19, which is simply an abbreviation of “CO”rona “VI”rus “D”disease, which started in 20“19”. … Read more