Traveling During COVID Pandemic

Traveling During Covid

Airport Taxi
Traveling to the airport for our flight to Taiwan.

Shortly after Gene Therapy, my mom noticed one of Rylae-Ann’s leg seemed a bit longer than the other. We had noticed the same too, but were were not too concerned. She had very low muscle tone, known as hypotonia, so we thought it was due to her limp state. During a routine check-up we casually asked if she could have an x-ray. The doctor didn’t seem too concerned either but scheduled it based on our request. To everyone’s surprise, the x-ray showed that her hip was actually dislocated. We wasted no time and scheduled her hip surgery as soon as possible however COVID made that planning a bit more challenging. 

We discovered that Taiwan’s quarantining rules only allowed Taiwan nationals to fly in, which meant daddy wouldn’t be able to go with us. We also learned that we would have to quarantine for 14 days! I didn’t know how I was going to manage teaching online and taking care of Rylae-Ann in a tiny apartment for 14 days, but I had no other choice but to face the reality and to do what was best for my daughter.

Getting ready to go to the airport.

No lines and empty planes.

Taiwan quarantine package.

Hand sanitizer, wet wipes, masks, face shield, stroller cover, tissues and all the other standard travel gear parents travel with were all packed and ready to go. Daddy took us to the airport and after that I was alone with Rylae-Ann. I was feeling anxious about the traveling especially at the height of the COVID pandemic. It wasn’t helping my anxiety. 


Not was the airport like a ghost town, but to our delight so were the airplanes. This meant we had more space and less chance of getting sick from COVID. Also, I felt more relaxed since I did not have to worry about annoying nearby travelers. Rylae-Ann was amazing and cooperative. She had her iPad to entertain her which she was becoming skilled at using.

Rylae stroller

As a Taiwanese citizen we received a great welcome home package filled with delicious local snacks and goodies from the government. I love Taiwanese snacks, they are just delicious. Rylae-Ann didn’t get to try any though. She wasn’t allowed any unhealthy snacks, so it was all for me. The goodies helped with making the 14-day quarantine a bit more bearable.

Rylae on the plane

When we finally got out of quarantine we happily left our room, but it was not time to check into the hospital. Although this fast transition was not ideal, I only had limited vacation time, before I had to return to work.

Upon admissions, I was informed that I would not be able to check into our ward. Unbeknownst to hospital team who scheduled the surgery or me, there was a rule that international travelers must do an additional 7 day self-quarantine. You can imagine the frustration I was feeling at this point. I desperately wanted to treat my daughter’s hip while contending with my limited vacation time. Spending more time siting around was not appealing at all.

Rylae’s surgery was supposed to be the day after our 14-day quarantine which would give us extra time to recover before getting back on a plane home. I was confused, lost, and alone. They told me that we had to go home. I quickly called Rich and told him we were homeless. In a few short minutes he had a wonderful hotel room with a view of the iconic Taipei 101.

We stayed another week at the hotel and were able to actually enjoy our time. Luckily, we were able reschedule Rylae’s hip surgery and would not have to change our return ticket dates. 

Rylae-Ann received her hip surgery in June of 2020. She had to stay a week at the hospital. With Rylae-Ann in a full body spica cast we made the return flight to Singapore where daddy met us with open arms. Unfortunately, Rylae-Ann and I had to perform another 14-day quarantine, but this time daddy was with us.

Taipei 101

By Judy Wei

Judy Wei was born in Taiwan but grew up in Thailand. She has a BA in Special Education and a Masters in Education K-12.

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