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Woman battling COVID-19 in the hospital urges vaccinations as cases rise

By Gabriela Vidal

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    ST. LOUIS (KMOV) — This was not the Christmas Trinette Lovett hoped to give her children this year.

“I went out and I did the tree and I decorated, and I did all of those things,” Lovett said. “I got the Christmas list. And now it’s just like, for nothing.”

Lovett has been battling COVID-19 and pneumonia at Mercy Hospital since last Tuesday.

“I have an amazing 2-and-a-half-year-old boy. He is nonverbal. I know he’s missing his momma. I’m missing him,” she said. “I’ve got a pregnant daughter at home who thinks she has COVID and momma isn’t there. [We] have nine kids, and I am not there.”

The 44-year-old Lovett was admitted into the hospital shortly after traveling to visit one of her children for his 21st birthday in Las Vegas. It was a long-awaited reunion with her son she had not seen since he was young. They reconnected during the height of the pandemic.

“I was choking up blood…made my way to the ER and the CAT scan came back that there was no blood clot, but there was COVID,” Lovett said. “Twenty-four hours later, I had COVID pneumonia.”

Before that, she said she had taken every precaution with her family to prevent infection.

“For us, we have a very, very high-risk household, so we have been the family that has stayed away from COVID. I am a pulmonary embolism survivor,” Lovett said. “My husband is 24 hours oxygen dependent because of an injury to his lungs, we’ve got asthmatic children in the home. So, we have been the family that has turned down the invites. We have turned down the trips. We have done all of that.”

Lovett said she thinks she may have gotten COVID-19 on the plane traveling to see her son.

“COVID just doesn’t care. It doesn’t care about our celebrations and what’s going on,” she said.

The day she was hospitalized was supposed to be the day she and two of her youngest children were set to get vaccinated.

“We’ve always had a vaccine plan. My husband wanted to go first, so he did, and he didn’t grow wings and fly away. So, I was like okay honey I’m next,” she said.

However, Lovett says the reason she did not do it sooner was in part because of her pre-existing conditions putting her at a higher risk of blood clots if she got the vaccine.

“Doctors wanted to start me on a regimen of blood thinners first and do all these different things to be pre-emptive,” she said. “I [also] had major surgery in October and so I didn’t want to get the vaccine on top of the pain of healing from major surgery because I have no idea how my body is going to respond to the vaccine. So, our plan was that when we got back from Vegas that myself and my 7 and my 13-year-old would be vaccinated.”

Her husband was also hospitalized with COIVD-19 last week, staying a couple rooms down from her at Mercy. He made it back home after three days in the hospital, which Lovett believes is because he had already been vaccinated.

“It’s the reason he was able to walk out of here. And I know that. And the doctors attest to that,” she said.

Lovett is now battling complications she believes she may have to live with for the rest of her life.

“I cannot sit up without oxygen. I cannot take a step without feeling like a fish out of water. My lungs are hurt, they are damaged. I am 44 years old. I will probably need oxygen for the rest of my life,” she said.

It is a painful reminder to her and her family, that even two years later, the fight against COVID-19 is far from over.

Lovett urged more people to get vaccinated, especially among people in the black community.

“There is so much fear of the government and the conspiracy, and they want to kill us all. And I don’t want to discount our fear because I can’t. To do that would be to discount our history. But this is not that,” she said. “This is not a fight that you want to fight.”

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