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'I was scared out my mind': COVID survivor says virus changed her mind about vaccine

Angie Sojourner says she was infected with COVID-19 by a patient in February, and it changed her life.

COLUMBIA, S.C. — A Midlands healthcare worker who was skeptical of the vaccine says she has had a major wake up call after surviving COVID. Now, she's urging others to get the vaccine. 

“I just didn’t know what to do. I was scared out my mind and .. I was like, anyone that goes through COVID knows that it is no joke,” said Angie Sojourner.

Sojourner is a healthcare worker who said she was infected with COVID-19 by a patient in February and it changed her life.

RELATED: COVID has killed about as many Americans as the 1918-19 flu

“It was extreme. It’s a lot mentally on a family and emotionally because you can’t be around anyone because you can infect them,” said Sojourner.

Sojourner is studying nursing at Midlands Tech and said she was alarmed by her COVID diagnosis as both an elderly caregiver and a travel medical tech.

“I know I have to take care of myself because I can’t take care of anyone else if I’m to the point I’m down or I ignore what the doctor’s telling me to do, and so I did exactly what they told me and everything went well,” she said.

She said months after recovering from COVID, she continued battling pneumonia and other side effects.

RELATED: Lexington woman survives COVID-19, says vaccine “saved her life”

“To this day, I am still struggling. I’m sensitive to cold air for some apparent reason. I went to a lung specialist and he said these are symptoms that are gonna be lingering on and you’re just gonna have to cope with it and over time they should ease away,” she said.

Sojourner said her husband Antonio and teenage sons Erick and Derek quarantined with her and stayed by her side.

She said, “We went through it as a family. Thank goodness that we got through it.”

Sojourner said it was the support from her family that helped her make it through. 

RELATED: Pfizer says vaccine is safe for kids; experts say shots are still weeks out

“The family support is everything. Even a text just saying ‘hey, do you need anything?’ And I’m like ‘okay, no I’m good,’” said Sojourner.

Before Sojourner’s diagnosis, she said she was skeptical about getting vaccinated, but was given a major wake up call. In a few weeks, she says she’ll be fully vaccinated.

“I think about all the people that I went to school with that lost their life to COVID-19. Teachers that taught me in school. A pastor that I attend church with lost his life and I was like this is something that I have to do,” she said.

“Look at the numbers. If you know anyone that passed away from it. Think about if they had a second chance, would they get vaccinated? Simple as that.”

RELATED: 'It was a no-brainer': Midlands moms share why they got vaccinated while pregnant