While it might take years for the world to return to normalcy, in many parts of the United States, grandparents that have been vaccinated against COVID-19 are reuniting with their grandchildren after an year. And, the emotional scenes of the reunion are heartwarming.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the national public health agency of the United States, recently released evidence-based guidelines for those people who have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19. It says that grandparents can hug their unvaccinated grandchildren, especially if they live locally. The CDC still believes that travelling might be risky.
Evelyn Shaw had not touched, let alone hugged anyone in over an year. But, after she was vaccinated and when her doctor wrote on her prescription: “You are allowed to hug your granddaughter,” she let her granddaughter into her Bronx apartment to have a emotional yet happy reunion.
“I was stuck in Covid land and having this prescription from my doctor gave me the courage to let her in,” Shaw told CNN’s Brianna Keilar. “There we were, standing in my apartment just hugging and hugging and crying and crying for the first time in a year, which was an out-of-body experience. It was blissful.”
Similarly, in Shakopee, Minnesota, grandparents 55-year-old Lanae Paaverud and her husband would visit with their three grandchildren by standing outside a glass storm door. Unfortunately, they do not qualify to get the shot because of their age.
“Since we could not hug or hold the grandbabies, we would put our hands (later our gloved hands), on the glass with each of them,” Paaverud wrote. “We would make little games of it, with peek-a-boo, follow-the-hand, etc. to get her to smile and enjoy the interaction.”
However, recently the grandparents took extra precautions to be able to see their grandchildren, the younger of which is merely 13 months old, in person: they wore a double mask and used a disinfectant spray on their clothes.
“It was a beautiful moment,” Paaverud wrote. “I had put my hands out to help her walk (she is just learning), and she instead started touching my hands with her usual soft curiosity, checking out the hands she had only seen on the glass the last six months.”
Don’t these stories bring a tear to your eyes and a smile to your lips? And how we would take the simple pleasures of life such as being around our loved ones for granted!
We hope and pray that normalcy returns to all parts of the world soon.