Just over a month after revealing his diagnosis with the autoimmune disorder, J.P. and his wife, Ashley, appeared in a taped interview on Tuesday's episode of Good Morning America. The couple first met during Ashley's season of The Bachelorette in 2011.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Guillain-Barré syndrome causes a person's immune system to damage their nerves, causing muscle weakness and sometimes paralysis, things that J.P. experienced prior to going to the hospital.
"He complained to me, 'You know, my hands feel a little weird,'" Ashley, 35, told ABC's Adrienne Bankert. "By the end of the day, we had picked up a pizza for the weekend, it was a Friday, and he couldn't carry the pizza."
"Walking was hard. I couldn't put on socks. I couldn't get dressed," he said of the disorder's effects.
"He couldn't open up the bathroom doorknob," Ashley added.
For 42-year-old J.P., the hardest part came when he was unable to be strong for his kids, Fordham, 5, and Essex, 3.
"I can't hug my kids, pick up my kids, do anything for my kids. I don't want my kids to see me like this," he said. "I just burst into tears just 'cause I was scared and frustrated."
Prior to that moment, Ashley said she'd "never seen him cry."
Now J.P. is working with a physical therapist five days a week to manage the symptoms of the disorder, which doctors told him they caught early, adding that the worst is likely behind him.
"It's never that obvious until you're in sickness and you realize what the potential catastrophic affect it could have on a relationship, on a family, on an individual," J.P. said of his and Ashley's wedding vows.
"My physical therapist said that I’m very, very lucky that I’m able to do things three weeks later that I shouldn't be able to do, which is all incredible," he said. "My fine motor skills are virtually all back."