Thursday, June 11, 2009

Swine Flu

... while this hit months ago, they managed to keep it quite contained, catching the majority of the people at the airport until this week. Apparently there were 12 cases in one school as of this week and now all nurseries, kindergartens and primary schools are closed for two weeks! This is so crazy to me. Last year we had an extra week off due to the normal flu and now two weeks for this. On the 23rd, they will determine whether or not to keep school closed or reopen to finish out the year.

Many international schools sent their students home yesterday basically saying, "See you next year!" They're not bothering to come back for 1 day on the 26th. Makes sense to me but apparently some are quite angry about this. Technically though, schools are to remain open and staffed in case some children have no place to go (aka.. no parents at home or helpers) though some schools are allowing anyone who shows up at the door to stay.

This means that I still have to work... and obviously I'm disappointed but I'm more frustrated than anything. I feel like our school is really being taken advantage of. In the 4 days school has been suspended, we've had anywhere from 10 to 17 students out of about 36 total and it's not because they have no one to care for their children. I fight my feelings every morning and it's been quite a struggle for me... a real test of patience and joy.

As of today, 2 Secondary schools have now been closed. I don't think that will mean any change for us but it shows that the H1N1 is spreading. I'm not all that worried but I am trying to be cautious.... keeping the kids at home and trying to stay away from bigger crowds. I'm thankful that we live in Sai Kung as it's a much smaller community than where we previously lived and with the house that we live in, we are so blessed to have the space to be able to stay at home and not go nuts.

We have arranged some playdates with some school friends and Isabella still has her swim lessons but both of those are with a small amount of children, of parents who are also very cautious.

But this does make me nervous about traveling, as many of the cases we initially got were from flights from the US. I don't want to put my child's health at risk but I certainly don't want to miss my chance to go home. So we would greatly appreciate all prayers for our health and protection from this virus.

On a much lighter note... we FINALLY had some sunshine today in what seems like months. Izzy and I went swimming and she's been practicing her treading water, kicking and blowing bubbles. She seems to be stuck at putting her face/head under water so I tried really hard to get her to do it today. She finally gave it a go but I missed it, thankfully she did it again and I said to her, 'Wow! You know you should really try to do it 4 times since your 4 years old.' and of course she did it. Then she kept going. She asked if I could call Reg (her teacher) to let her know how many times she put her face under. I was so proud of her because I know this was really a scary thing for her. We also practiced jumping in... yet another thing she has been hesitant to do (aside from sitting on the edge and falling in). Before we got out I asked her if she wanted to jump one more time, she said yes. And then it was... 'one more time, just 3 more times, 5 more times, okay mommy?' She's getting braver!

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