Last updated on Jun 21st, 2021 at 12:28 pm

“Was humbling to experience the kindness of this frontline worker who was just as exhausted after all leave was cancelled and none of them could spend time with their families.”

Joburg mom, Bronwyn Kloppers had a very big scare when her twins were admitted to the Olivedale hospital on 26 December 2020 after being diagnosed with Adenovirus and bronchial pneumonia.

Stanford Children’s Health explains that Adenoviruses are a group of viruses that cause a variety of infections like a cold, pink eye, croup, bronchiolitis and pneumonia.

Children can get quite sick if they catch this virus, and it spreads very much the same as COVID-19. When someone who has the virus coughs or sneezes on another person, or when kids touch an object that is contaminated by the virus, as it can live on doorknobs, counters and toys for many hours.

Unlike COVID-19, however, the virus is also spread through a digestive tract infection caused by not washing hands properly or eating and drinking contaminated food or water.

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Mom & twins admitted to hospital the day after Christmas

Bronwyn explains that her 12-month-old twins, Lana Bella and Lori Beth Taylor both had severe diarrhoea at first and then later the infection moved to their chests. Lori had to be admitted to hospital on 26 December. “I was originally only admitted with one twin hoping the other twin was strong enough, but three days later, Lana joined us,” Bronwyn says.

Image: Supplied by Bronwyn Kloppers

 

By this time Lori had recovered to some extent, and Bronwyn had her hands full with both babies.

“I was holding my very weak twin and trying to console her aching body and the other was all over me and this angel of a woman simply swooped her up and carried her,” Bronwyn wrote on the Facebook group #ImStaying.

Hospital staff are exhausted

When we spoke to Bronwyn to find out more about the kindness of this frontline worker, she explained that it was one of the head nurses on night shift in the paediatric ward who comforted Lori.

Bronwyn says hospitals are chaotic and cold at the moment. “Everyone has COVID-19 until tested negative. The staff are exhausted – from the medical teams to the admin teams. You can see the concern in their faces. The eyes are friendly but so drawn. You can see everyone wants to embrace and love you and the twins but there’s this big invisible barrier. The hallways are empty and eerie. The spare beds from the wards are carted away to the COVID ward.”

This angel woman came to my rescue

“She was a light in a very dark space,” Bronwyn says about the nurse who showed such kindness. “I was exhausted from the first baby and having to go through the admission process with the second one alone. It was just so reassuring knowing I had the support and could focus on my second baby, knowing my first was comfortable,” Bronwyn says.

Bronwyn and the twins are at home now. She says the virus will be in the babies’ system for at least another month, but they’re doing well and getting stronger by the day.

Image: Supplied by Bronwyn Kloppers

 

“COVID is very real. I have lost people I know to it. But there are some other really, really nasty viruses out there,” she says.