Susanne is 47 and White British. She is married with three children. She works as a freelance consultant. Two of Susanne’s children caught Covid in March 2020, and then the whole family caught Covid about a year later. Susanne didn’t find the advice from the NHS very helpful, and spoke to an acupuncturist when she had Covid, who recommended a heavy dose of vitamin C via elderberry drinks.

Susanne’s eldest son and daughter were the first in her family to catch Covid in March 2020. This was a frightening time for Susanne because there was no test which could give her family a conclusive diagnosis, though the GP said that he was confident it was Covid based on the symptoms. Susanne was particularly worried about her son who had Covid, as he was ‘very poorly’ with it for two weeks. She says that a child in her local hospital had died of Covid and she was panicking that this could happen to her son.

The whole family fell ill with Covid around a year later, and Susanne found that ‘people were surprised that we were battling it again’. Susanne reflected it was ‘like running a ward but being ill yourself’ and that it was one of the hardest times for them as a family. She felt ‘absolutely wiped out’ from having Covid. Her husband recovered quicker she did.

Susanne’s husband got quite ill after the first Covid vaccine, but was fine for the second one. Susanne was fine with both of them. She was very pleased to have the vaccine and felt like she had an extra layer of protection. She was also happy for her children to take the vaccine.

Susanne is in touch with complementary health practitioners, who she felt provided more helpful advice about Covid than the NHS. When her family had Covid, she was advised by an acupuncturist to take zinc, vitamin C, and elderberry. Susanne is unsure whether this actually helped her Covid. She recommended rest as one of the best ways to recover from Covid, so ‘you’re giving your body the chance to heal’.

Across the lockdowns Susanne and her husband tried to make ‘the whole experience of lockdown as positive as possible’ for their family. They went out on bike rides together and focused on making new family traditions.