(NBC) - The Connecticut man who cut off his own arm to save his life says he had too much to live for to just give up.
Jonathan Metz, a graphic designer from West Hartford, made his first public comments on his harrowing ordeal at the hospital where he's still being treated.
Metz did the unthinkable a week ago, cutting off his left arm after it became stuck inside the furnace he was trying to repair.
"I feel and felt like I have a whole lot to live for," he said Tuesday.
12 hours after first getting it stuck Metz detected infection and decided to lose his arm to save his life.
Metz began cutting with a hacksaw blade.
"I fashioned a tourniquet out of shirt I was wearing, tied it as best I could and started cutting," he explained.
After hitting an artery Metz started losing a lot of blood, and a lot of hope.
"I started to have thoughts that this was going to be it," he said.
He made another tourniquet, but had 18 more hours to go before his rescue.
"I would describe a near death experience at that point. I had given up, there was really no hope inside me."
Two days later worried co-workers called police.
Paramedics completed the amputation.
Doctors couldn't reattach it, but Metz has no regrets.
"The human spirit, it's strong and trust me, whether it's cutting your arm off or finding some other way I think people would be surprised what they're capable of," Metz said.
Doctors plan to have him ready for a prosthetic arm within three months.
His family has set up a website to collect donations to pay for that new prosthetic arm: http://helpjonmetz.com.
Metz says to stay alive he even drank rust-colored water from a boiler release valve on the furnace.
An energy company donated and installed a new furnace at Metz's home Monday.
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