Chris’s Christmas Corona Conundrum

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Chris Shields, Head Editor

The holidays are a time for togetherness and warm experiences. This year, however, the holidays consisted of social distancing, isolation, and paranoia for the Shields family. Covid-19 continues to run amok in our community, and it has made its way into many of our homes. You never think it’ll happen to you, until it does. Unfortunately, this was the case for me this holiday season. 

On Wednesday December 16th, I was remote learning from home alongside my mom who was also working from home, when we received a call from EVMS that my little brother had been sitting directly next to a student in his class who tested positive for Papa Roni. We were told to come to the school and pick him up ASAP. 

After taking him to the fairgrounds and getting him tested later that day, my family was planning what to do going forward. My mom was scheduled to go into her office the next day, my dad is still working full time in his office, and being a B-Day kid, the next day would have been one of my two in-person school days. After deliberation we decided it would be safest to keep us home out of concern for ourselves and our peers. 

On Saturday the 19th, the health department called to confirm he tested positive. Six days before Christmas my thirteen-year-old brother was forced into “isolation” and the rest of my family had to “quarantine.” He was told to stay in as few rooms in the house as physically possible, and the rest of us could not leave the house and had to cut off as much contact with him as we could. 

With plans to run errands and get groceries the next day, plans to finish Christmas shopping and do other Christmas traditions, and plans to visit our grandparents for dinner on Christmas day all thwarted, it was a very weird and quiet holiday at my house. 

For two weeks since his test day my brother had to spend most of his break in the basement and our bedroom (we share a room). It wasn’t safe for us to go to the basement and I had to sleep on our couch in the living room with our two adorable and annoying cats for two weeks.  

We celebrated Christmas morning in separate rooms with masks on, and I cooked a Christmas breakfast which was served to my brother in the basement. Our grandparents brought us Christmas dinner and left it on the porch, so instead of spending time with our extended family, we watched the football game and ate. 

2020 was a weird year full of weird experiences and the Shields clan got to round it all off with our own Covid scare. As unfortunate and unpredicted as it was, it made for a unique holiday experience that hopefully no one else had to share. I’m grateful we’re all okay and safe and I’m grateful that this Christmas was one we’ll remember. 

For all of you out there who have gone through this same situation at some point during this pandemic, I sympathize with you and share your angst toward the whole situation. I hope everyone had a happy holiday and has a corona-free new year! 

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