Rachel Maddow got unusually personal on Thursday’s episode of her MSNBC show, explaining that her partner of more than 20 years, Susan Mikula, is recovering from a case of COVID-19 that she thought “might kill her.” Maddow pleaded with viewers to reconsider their holiday plans in order to protect those they love.
“Just, whatever you’re doing, however you’ve calibrated risk in your life, don’t get this thing. Do whatever you can to keep from getting it,” Maddow said, from a remote location, at the top of her show. “For Thanksgiving next week, you’re really going to have to just have it at home, without people coming over. And, yeah, that’s gonna suck, but that is going to suck so much less than you or someone in your family getting this and getting sick. Trust me.”
Maddow’s message got through to at least some of her viewers, who said they had changed their plans after her candid message.
“Your plea for us to think about the people whom we love brought me to my senses,” one person tweeted.
@maddow Thank you so much for sharing your story. You helped me make a difficult decision to cancel my scheduled trip back home. I knew it was right in my heart of hearts but selfishly resisted. Your plea for us to think about the people whom we love brought me to my senses.
— Corinne Corley (@momugwump) November 20, 2020
I had trip planned from LA to NY to see my family for Thanksgiving but ur testimonial had such impact & resonance that I immediately canceled said trip. Hard decision but necessary. Thank you for sharing your story with us. Hopefully it saved some lives. Perhaps even my own.
— George Heller (@HellerGeorge) November 20, 2020
@maddow recalibrated our acceptable risk calculation. Cancelled our Christmas travel plans. I’m not willing to lose my planet, or my parents. Thank you.
— Kirsten Watson (@KWatson_MDUSD) November 20, 2020
Another, actress and comedian Judy Gold, said she’d called off a trip to New Orleans to see her son play his first basketball game of the season at Tulane University. She hasn’t seen him since June, she noted.
After watching @maddow this evening, I immediately canceled my trip to #NOLA next week to see my son @CallahanGoldBen at @Tulane. It is the first game of the the season for @GreenWaveMBB - the 🏀 team he plays for. I wanted to be there with him more than anything - as I (1/4)
— Judy Gold (@JewdyGold) November 20, 2020
Some viewers explained that they’d already canceled trips, but that Maddow had given them confidence in their choice.
For many years I have spent Thanksgiving with my dear cousin and other loved ones. Today I decided to cancel my travel plans.@maddow just convinced me that I made the right decision.
— David S🚘🏳️🌈 (@savage714) November 20, 2020
I have a pregnant daughter living in Western Mass. we decided last week to cancel all T Day plans. Rachel’s plea just confirmed to me that we are doing the right thing.
— LadyVeteranforBiden/Harris (@deb3ms) November 20, 2020
The Nov. 19 show was Maddow’s first since Nov. 6, as she has quarantined, solo, away from Mikula.
“My relationship with Susan is the only thing, at the end of the day, that I would kill or die for without hesitation,” Maddow said. “And Susan has been sick with COVID these past couple of weeks. At one point, we really thought that there was a possibility that it might kill her, and that’s why I’ve been away.”
Maddow said she’s continued to test negative while in isolation.
“[Susan’s] not only been positive over this time, she’s gotten sicker and sicker while I tried to care for her while still staying physically apart from her,” Maddow said. “And the bottom line is that she’s gonna be fine. She is recovering. She’s still sick, but she’s gonna be OK, and we’re not scared anymore like we were. But it really didn’t feel like it was going OK at the outset.”
For the latest coronavirus news and updates, follow along at https://news.yahoo.com/coronavirus. According to experts, people over 60 and those who are immunocompromised continue to be the most at risk. If you have questions, please reference the CDC’s and WHO’s resource guides.
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