Mother who spent 35 days on ventilator recovers from COVID-19

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- This Mother's Day weekend is especially special for Maria Mendoza, a recovering COVID-19 patient.

The 54-year-old woman was on a ventilator for 35 days after testing positive for the coronavirus.

"She's always been the kind of person that wants everybody to go to her church, our church, and pray and come to our Bible studies," Mendoza's daughter Angely Alvarenga said.

Mendoza is a grandmother who is known for her kind heart. In mid-March, she started feeling sick and by the middle of the month, she was transported to the hospital.

Alvarenga said the doctor called her with some concerning news.

"Her body was not working. Her lungs were not working. Her blood pressure was very, very low and there was nothing we could do," Alvarenga said.

During the same time, Alvarenga and her brother were also batting COVID-19.

"We ended up at the emergency room three times. Two times we could barely walk," Alvarenga said.

The brother and sister got better, but their mother remained on a ventilator.

"We prayed in the morning, the afternoon, the evening and at night," Alvarenga said.

Family members also prayed outside of the hospital, and after a week of bad news, good news came.

"The next day was Good Friday. The next day around 12 p.m., it was the first day in three weeks that the doctors said my mom had a significant improvement," Alvarenga said.

Although the following days were filled with ups and downs, the family's faith remained strong.

Last month, Maria tested negative for COVID-19, and on April 29, she was taken off the ventilator.

"Once she was negative with the COVID-19, she just started running towards the light," Alvarenga said.

She still has a long road to recovery with rehab next, but her family has started a GoFundMe to help with expenses.

Alvarenga is grateful she can talk to her mother in time for Mother's Day.

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