‘This is not a joke,’ New mom pleads with Manitobans to take COVID-19 seriously

WINNIPEG — A Winnipeg mom, who just gave birth to her third son, is praying for Manitobans to start taking COVID-19 seriously after she and her newborn son have both tested positive for the virus.

Days after taking her newborn son home, Shaneen Robinson-Desjarlais, was back in the hospital with high blood pressure and a migraine.

“It took like three days for them to stabilize me for that, it was really out of control,” Robinson-Desjarlais told CTV News from her hospital bed. “And then that was when I tested positive, was on the 20th, which was six days after the baby was born.”

Robinson-Desjarlais said she went back home for a short time, but has since been readmitted and her condition continues to decline.

“This is my third day at the hospital at HSC and they said that my blood and my lungs are still not getting enough oxygen today. So I am still here for I don’t know how many days, several days, I guess, until I can plateau and start to get better.”

Based on the timing, the mother of three suspects she contracted the virus from one of her older sons who she believes got the virus at daycare.

The baby, and Robinson-Desjarlais’ father, Eric Robinson, who looked after the two older boys while she was giving birth, have also tested positive.

“My little guy is having a hard time not being with me right now. His health is good, though,” she said. “He went through a couple of tough nights last week that I had to be up late with him. Breastfeeding helps with the congestion in his nose and chest. His little tiny nostrils were too small to get suction out of them so I had to stay up late with him for two nights and make sure he was safe. He’s okay now, but he is having a really hard time not being with me.”

Eric Robinson posted about the virus on Facebook.

“My family is Directly affected by Covid 19,” the post reads. “2 youngest grandsons age 2 and newborn tested positive. My daughter Shaneen Robinson-Desjarlais Hospitalized for 2nd time in one week, I also tested positive inspite (sic) of precautions we thought we were taking. I URGE you to get tested and book a Vaccination time. This is something we can’t ignore.”

Robinson-Desjarlais said her dad is on the mend.

“He’s just really hoping that people take this seriously, as do I,” she said. “It’s just really hard knowing how much I am suffering, and my family is suffering, and my baby is suffering.”

“People think this is a joke and people don’t take it seriously, that’s really disappointing. We have to try harder for our elders and families because, I mean, I want to live for my family and I hope that I can.”

Robinson-Desjarlais said it has been very tough to be apart from her family in what should be important bonding time. Her husband and three children are in isolation at home.

“I just pray that people can understand that this is not a joke. This virus is real. I will never get this time back with my newborn baby. I’m not out of the water yet. I am still progressively getting worse each day and I’m praying I can get out of this and get home to my family,” she said. “I wouldn’t wish this on my worst enemy. We need to be kind to each other as humans and do our best to protect each other. This is real and this is deadly, and I am praying that I make it out of here to be with my babies.”

Robinson-Desjarlais said she did not become eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine until very late in her pregnancy. She had planned to get the shot after giving birth. 

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