The 13 emotional stages of having to self-isolate over Christmas

All I want for Christmas is to not be locked in my room

Christmas 2021 couldn’t be worse than Christmas 2020 they said. Well, Omicron has come along and stuck its middle finger up to that.

Maybe you’ve seen the dreaded two red lines on a lateral flow or you received the dreaded “hey so I’ve got something I need to tell you…” text from a friend.

But whatever the cause, spending Christmas self-isolating wasn’t on anyone’s list to Santa.

So, those of you locked in your room for the festive period will know you go through a million different emotions – not all of them very merry.

Stage one: Being an emotional wreck

You get that text from Test and Trace or see your positive lateral flow and immediately your heart sinks. Images flash before your eyes of your mum bring you your turkey dinner on a lap tray and leaving it at your bedroom door.

It feels like you’ve been punched in the stomach by Father Christmas himself and you sob uncontrollably for at least an hour.

Because you’ve done it corona, you’ve officially ruined Christmas. Cheers, son’s crying.

@phoebe_girlxx Covid 19… thanks for ruining Christmas 🎄 #fyp #isolation #christmas #covid19 ♬ original sound – alyssa🦋

Stage two: Denial

“But I can’t have covid, I haven’t even BEEN anywhere…”

You think you can’t be so unlucky to have caught it now – two shitting days before Christmas – out of all possible times. Maybe Test and Trace got the wrong number or you’re hallucinating the faint T line. Because why me and why now?!

Stage three: Research, research, research

Your Google search history probably looks something like:

“How common are false positive lateral flows”, “Can I give my family covid by wrapping their presents”, “Is there such a thing as leaving a lateral flow too long”.

You’re just praying Pfizer or Moderna have done their jobs properly and you won’t get properly sick or accidentally infect half your family.

Stage four: Guilt

You start sweating like a sinner in church and question if that drink with a friend before you left uni was worth it. Maybe you should have put your mask on a bit quicker after finishing your meal deal on the train home or patched that house party.

But ultimately, you reassure yourself you’ve probably just gotten unlucky – yes it could’ve been from having fun or it equally could’ve been from that prick in the corner shop that wasn’t wearing a mask. You will never know – like ever – so stop stressing.

@natashamachucaw It may be based on a true story 🙄 #oops #sorry #christmas #comedy #darkhumour #covid #staysafe #foryoupage #family ♬ without me – -tpwk

Stage five: Moping and feeling sorry for yourself

You question what the point of anything is if it really is just bad luck. So you crack open a box of Celebrations, open Netflix, and give up.

Stage six: Distraction

Being a Bah Humbug is a very unsustainable way to spend up to ten days isolation. So you’re picking it up and trying to find things to do that make you happy if you can’t leave the house.

You rediscover all those March 2020 hobbies – anyone for banana bread with some added corona?

Stage seven: Self-care

Well, on the bright side, if you can’t do anything for ten days then at least you can look after yourself. You’ve barely got a good night’s sleep since September and now you can’t really do a lot else so looks like you’ll be getting a solid eight hours a night.

You have all the time in the world to get back into your skincare routine you’ve slipped out of – you can even treat yourself to a boujee bath or two with all the smellies you know you’re going to get on Christmas Day.

Stage eight: Takeaways for days

Who needs the Three Wise Men when you’ve got a Deliveroo driver, Uber Eats rider, and the Just Eat man. Dishy Rishi might be worried about the state of the hospitality sector but you’re singlehandedly propping up your hometown’s restaurants with the amount of food you order morning, noon, and night.

You’ve definitely spent at least one evening eating enough Chinese food for Jesus, Mary, Joseph, and even the wee donkey. At least your beef in black bean sauce is a good way to tell if you’ve lost your sense of taste and smell.

Stage nine: Desperately trying to be merry

You try and salvage what remains of the festive period and force yourself to feel Christmassy. You sit down to a festive movie marathon with a Terry’s Chocolate Orange and maybe a Bailey’s hot chocolate or two.

Because if Macauley Culkin screaming at aftershave burn or Hugh Grant dancing in 10 Downing Street can’t get you into the Christmas spirit then nothing can.

@sammie.lawrencexx Reply to @saritacarratala1994 you wish is my command;) #CustomersMostLoved #covid #MyBrawlSuper #covidpositive #ImTheMainCharacter #fyp ♬ original sound – Sammie<3

Stage ten: Becoming one with your duvet

Unsurprisingly, there were no Christmas miracles and you still feel crappy about your Covid-mas. You take to your duvet, wrap yourself up like a pig in blanket, and snuggle in for the long haul.

Stage 11: Acceptance

It might have taken you many days, but you’ve finally accepted your fate of spending Christmas alone in your room. You feel weirdly calm about it because after all: Christmas is just one day of hundreds, there’ll be many more fun Christmases in the future, and time is a social construct.

Stage 12: Counting down to the end

Somehow, you’ve blinked and your period of isolation is almost up. You feel really proud that you’ve survived a full ten days without completely losing it.

Or maybe you’ve managed to sneak out with two negative lateral flows and you thank your immune system for not doing you dirty at the last minute.

@jackxsaunders 10 DAYS OF ISOLATION DONE!! LETS AV IT SANTA YOU SEXY BEAST #isolation #ivebeeninfected #christmas2021 ♬ original sound – maisie 🐒

Stage 13: Freedom!

You feel like you’re walking in the air. There’s still New Year’s to enjoy after all!

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