Rachel Maddow returned to her show on MSNBC on Thursday with a lengthy explanation for why she has been away and in quarantine for an extended period: Her longtime partner Susan Mikula has been seriously ill with COVID-19.
In a segment, she went into great personal detail about how much she is in love with Mikula, “the center of my universe,” and how frightening it was when she got sick. Maddow talked about the experience as a warning for those who are frustrated at the ongoing pandemic and may be getting more lax about taking precautions.
“Susan has been sick with COVID these past couple of weeks, and at one point we thought that it might kill her, and that’s why I have been away,” said Maddow, who hosted her show from her home where she is still in quarantine.
Maddow announced on Nov. 6 that she was going into quarantine because a “close contact” tested positive, but she did not go into further detail at the time. She has appeared occasionally via video chat, but Ali Velshi has been filling in on hosting duties. Her show is the highest rated on MSNBC.
She said that two weeks ago Mikula tested positive and she tested negative, but they have been separated and alone since then. Since she has been in quarantining, Maddow said that she has continuously been testing negative.
“She has not only been positive over this time but she has gotten sicker and sicker, while I have tried to care for her while still saying physically apart from her. The bottom like is that she is going to be fine. She is still sick, but she is going to be OK.”
“Whatever you have calculated into your life as acceptable risk, inevitable risk…I am just here to tell you to recalibrate that,” Maddow said, noting the filling of hospitals as COVID-19 cases spike across the country.
“Don’t get this thing. Do whatever you can to keep from getting it,” she said. She said that “she would have moved mountains” for it to have been her to have gotten sick instead of Susan.
“This thing does not give you that choice,” she said. “…It won’t necessarily be you. It will be the person in the world you most care about, and how can you bear that? All you can do is move heaven and earth to not get it and not transmit it.”
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