THOMASVILLE, N.C. (WGHP) — A Thomasville man says positivity and prayer are what helped him make it home after dealing with COVID-19 complications for more than a year.

Friends and family lined the street to welcome Jonathan Shoe home when he was finally released from the hospital.

“My whole goal was ‘get home, get home, I want to go home,'” Shoe said.

Shoe contracted COVID-19 and MRSA at the same time in February 2021 and didn’t know it.

“When I left my room in the ambulance, that’s all I remember,” he said. “They said I screamed and hollered like crazy until they got something to take the pain way.”

He spent two months unconscious and was put on a ventilator. When he finally woke up, things were different.

“At the time, I had a trach,” he said. “I could barely talk, I couldn’t move my head, couldn’t lift my arms. My legs, all my muscles, were completely gone. “ 

He had sepsis, which happens when an infection triggers a chain reaction throughout the body.

“I had a lot of conversations with God,” Shoe said. “Some were good, some were bad. Some of them, I was mad at him, and sometimes I was happy to be alive.”

But Shoe knew who he was fighting for while he recovered.

“I’m doing this for my son, who is 19, and for my wife, because they need me,” he said. “They want me here, and they need me here, and I want to be here with them.” 

He was able to go home on Saturday after 18 long months. Friends and family cheered him on as he came home, holding signs to welcome him back. There was a new ramp outside his home to help make getting around a bit easier while he focuses on rehabilitation exercises.

“When you’re starting from scratch, it’s frustrating sometimes and you have to center yourself and where you’ve been and where you are now,” Shoe said.

He said he is thankful for all the members of his church and his community who sent him cards and prayed for his recovery. He also said is also happy to look out the windows of his own home again, instead the one in his hospital room.