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Calgary mom infected with COVID-19 while pregnant meets newborn son over Zoom

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WATCH: A Calgary mom is sharing her painful journey with COVID-19 after she got infected with the disease while pregnant. As Jill Croteau reports, the mom-to-be nearly died after giving birth – Jun 2, 2021

Birthing plans are always left to chance but this was an extraordinary departure from what Calgarian Tina Wesley envisioned for baby Oscar’s welcome into the world.

Five-week-old Oscar. Jill Croteau/Global News

The 35-year-old mom delivered her newborn son several weeks early by an emergency C-section on April 26. She had just been admitted to hospital the day before after testing positive for COVID-19. She was intubated and in a coma for over a week and a half after Oscar’s birth.

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Tina Wesley in hospital. Credit: Leah Hennel/AHS

“I woke up nine days later, and I didn’t remember anything. I didn’t remember I was pregnant or even how I got to the hospital,” Wesley said. “I didn’t witness any of his birth. I wasn’t a part of it.

She was a healthy woman who never expected to get so sick and wants to share her story with others.

Tina Wesley with health-care workers. Credit: Leah Hennel/AHS

“I didn’t expect it to hit somebody at my age so hard and it made a life-changing moment. There is a lot to process and there will be for years to come,” Wesley said.

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Because they had to protect Oscar from being infected, the new mom didn’t get any cuddles. The first moment she saw him was on a tablet. She never got to hold him until he was almost two-and-a-half weeks old.

Tina Wesley visiting her son Oscar via Zoom. Credit: Leah Hennel/AHS

“The first time, I Zoomed for a whole hour. When I was talking, he was more awake than he’d ever been,” Wesley said.

“It was so heart filling but it made me want to cry because he was a floor underneath me and I couldn’t be with him.”

Wesley’s 10-year-old daughter was the first in the family to test positive. Wesley’s partner, Oscar’s dad, also tested positive.

“It did open conversations I didn’t think I would need to have,” Wesley said. “My children almost lost their mother. My son would have never met me. My daughter — I can’t imagine the pressure she felt.”

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Wesley has been home for close to three weeks. She went through physio and is very slowly rebuilding her strength after losing a lot of muscle mass.

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