My Nightmare

I was in a head crash then T-boned. After dreaming it, saying it, then driving, it happened. I figured I would have the day off, car be wrecked, bummer. We had an ice storm overnight. One of those moments that were inevitable, and the accident, there was no way to avoid it.

My nightmare comes to life

A man from our town, who had just dropped his brother and wife off for a 2-week vacation in Hawaii, had to be in a hurry to get home and tried passing a car. He lost control, next thing I know here he comes. I tried driving out into the field, just had the backend wave back and forth. So, I sat back, took my foot off the brake, and hung on. I centered on his car quartering to me, put it back in 4th, can't even say how bad it hurt. I was working construction at the time so I was in shape and had plenty of clothes, winter gear, so I was padded. It literally knocked the "beep beep" out of me. I had a 3-inch gash on my head, severe concussion that developed into amnesia, and banged my knee. The only thing that saved me was the ice at impacts, from a Buick and station wagon. I was numb from the pain and kept it somewhat together until the police came. I rattled off what happened, then said I can't talk anymore. I woke up in the hospital and didn't know anyone or anything. I had a nightmare of a headache, and on the third day I started coming out of it.

My migraine symptoms after car accident

I was out of work, I believe, for 8 months. The first 2 years were terrible. I always felt like my head tilted to the right, so I finally went to see a chiropractor. Finally, after 2 years, my head felt straight. The migraines let up, but I still had them occasionally. Over the years, I struggled after 2 major concussions and 4 minors, which aren't minor after the majors, up until roughly 2012 (the crash happened in 1984). My neck deteriorated over the years. I believe, after the wreck, it was the second, third, and fifth vertebrae that were damaged. I've had 4 major surgeries. I fused second to the sixth, and hardware at 3 and 4. I've had botox 27 to 33 shots in the neck, head, and face, 4 times. It worked 3 times but the fourth wasn't as effective. I still had migraines, probably 3 a week to 5 after. Now, keep in mind, I wasn't in any way physical in neck use and my mobility was roughly 15% left and right. I couldn't drive, to this day I can only go short distances. I can't drive in heavy traffic whatsoever. It's really tough trying to remember all of this, but no more surgeries are possible, except, ambulatory surgeries.

Treating my traumatic head pain

The last 3 to 4, I've gone to two different medical facilities: Buffalo and Batavia, New York. It was not until I went to Batavia that things started to improve. My head movement has improved slowly, but just isn't going to happen any further. I've been on pain meds, muscle relaxers, and in the last 2 years have had others added overnight due to waking up with cervicogenic migraines. I've been getting my nerves burned on both sides of the neck and under the knobs, adjacent to the neck. I had the ablation done 3 to 5 times until the nerves didn't regenerate. Now, the first step is injections that numb you up, and then you do all the things that cause your nightmare symptoms and migraines, all your pain, incapacitating pain, nausea, and getting sick. Loads of fun... not. It's a requirement from insurance companies. Then you report those results of how you felt during that time period to the doctor later that day. From there you start getting the problem areas of the nerves burned,(ablations).

I've got my third time on Thursday this week for the right side, overall clearly the worst side but depending on the day, weather, humidity, or any activity, you can only get them burned every 3 months, depending on the insurance minimum. I've been reducing my pain meds, from 10/325 to 7.5/325. I try to keep it at 2 a day. I've been working on exercising, something that wasn't possible through this journey.

Taking back control

It has been a long road and not until, say the last 2 years, that I came to anything close to what a normal person would do. Additionally, something you go through later in life, things you can no longer do, or you have to do a modified process to do those things. I've had to quit the weights 3 times in the last year. Nothing like I use to lift, but 1-piece hand weights, dumbbells, and the Chuck Norris cable thingy. I can recall the apparatus. I had too much pain and headaches, from my right side. Very disheartening, but I live to do it. Once you've achieved complete abrasions, you without a doubt get improvement.

I still and always will have restrictions, the pains and headaches, feel totally different, more of a pressure. Every time you get something done it's a learning experience all over, learning the do's and don't, so basically you work on building your new foundation, if you will. Writing this with 6 concussions was a very difficult task.

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