Mother happy to hold daughter again after coronavirus recovery

Woman says best part of overcoming virus was being able to see her little girl again

BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - It was a reunion full of smiles and tears, the one Shenetra McKnight has fought for since her coronavirus diagnosis.

McKnight battled the new coronavirus recently, drawing strength from the overwhelming desire to hug her young daughter to pull through.

“The body pain was the worst for me. I couldn’t move, I couldn’t get up, I couldn’t do anything. It (COVID-19) was terrible,” said Mcknight.

Mcknight is a 36-year-old pharmacist tech in Gonzales and lives in Baton Rouge.

She says she originally thought it was just allergies. That changed as her symptoms progressed.

“It kind of hit me like a ton of bricks. And my body felt really weak, I felt fatigued. And that's when the pain had started,” said Mcknight.

On March 17 she went to the hospital.

There, she was tested for the Flu and Strep Throat.

Those tests came back negative.

Doctors then tested her for COVID-19.

“[Doctors said] But you’re going to have to be quarantined until we get the results. So I had to make arrangements for my baby girl, had to make arrangements for me, because I didn’t want to be around a lot of people, I didn’t want to be around anyone,” said Mcknight.

On March 20, she found out she was in fact COVID-19 positive.

“It was consistent pain. It wasn’t like where, oh I’m alright now, and then later. Those first three days that I had it, it was terrible. I did have a slight cough, but I didn’t really have the shortness of breath until that third night,” said Mcknight.

She said the worst part was not being able to see her baby girl Karter Marie for 9 days while she was on quarantine.

McKnight leaned on her family for help.

Health officials told her she had to be symptom-free for 72 hours before she could hold her baby girl again.

Though McKnight says it wasn’t soon enough, the time for the two to meet again finally came.

“She (Karter Marie) talked my ear off. It was just the best feeling because she ran to me, she hugged me, and it was just an amazing feeling to be back with my baby girl,” said Mcknight.

Health officials have said most people who test positive for the new coronavirus are going to be okay.

However, some may possibly need critical care in hospitals.

Baton Rouge General has put up a survivor wall at both their locations. Every patient who survives COVID-19 gets to put a heart on the wall when they leave.

Baton Rouge General has created a "survivor wall" where patients who have recovered from COVID-19 can place a heart on the wall when they leave the hospital.
Baton Rouge General has created a "survivor wall" where patients who have recovered from COVID-19 can place a heart on the wall when they leave the hospital. (Source: Baton Rouge General)

McKnight says she is thankful her case of COVID-19 was not as severe as others she has heard about.

She is sharing her message of hope to remind folks that not all cases end in tragedy and serve as an inspiration for anyone trying to overcome this evil virus.

“I would say pray, trust God. Because God did not give us a spirit of fear, but of love and a sound mind. And with that alone, that has got me through this,” said Mcknight.

As we’re all in this fight together.

More than 300,000 people have recovered from the coronavirus worldwide, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.​

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