On July 1, 2005 everything changed for my family. We were on our way to visit my husbands family when an 18 wheeler ran us off the road causing us to roll 8 times. All of us survived and miracles happened. My beautiful daughter that you see model for me was thrown 40 feet after her seat belt failed and only suffered a concussion. I am grateful every day for her life and excellent health and I know she is meant for something special after surviving that with so little injury.
I was not so lucky I was trapped in the car with the hood up against my throat almost decapitating me. When they got me out of the car we were taken to the hospital and I was told I was fine and just having muscle spasms and they would release me as soon as I got up and walked. I tried and my entire body went numb. I could only lift my arms about 2 inches and the pain was incredible. The doctor came in and made me feel like I was faking it! he said "since you wont get up and walk we will admit you for observation!" like I was wasting his time!
I was in the room alone. My family was was with my daughter where they should have been. at 4 am a cna came in and I told her I needed something for pain and she said she would tell the nurse. I didn't see anyone until 7:45! I jumped all over the nurse who was from the next shift and she said "we were in report you are a nurse you understand!" Yes I am a nurse and I never let someone suffer like that!
About 1 hour later my room was swarming with nurses and doctors and even the Nursing director. They were trying to put a collar back on me and not telling me what was going on. Finally a Neurosurgeon came in and explained that the radiologist had noted fractures in my neck and back and they were taking me in for more an MRI and CT. The MRI and CT reveled c-1, c-2, t-1 t-7 and occipital condyle fractures. Less than 1% survive fractures above c-3 and I had 3 of them. As a critical care nurse who has taken care of several patients with broken necks on vents, I have never seen any above c-3, and in school all that was mentioned was anything above c-3 was instant death! I could not wrap my head around my diagnosis how am I still alive and how am I not on a vent? Nightmares still haunt me to this day.
After a long painful therapy I can function and I am not a quadriplegic but the pain is incredible. People think I am fine, I avoid people on the days I cant get around. They just don't understand what they can see. I tried to go back to work but as the day my pain increases and by the end I couldn't even concentrate, who wants a nurse like that. Our finances are in a horrible mess and no one got the tags of the 18 wheeler so it all fell on us financially (just a vent here). I need some modifications to the house to make life easier but cant even afford that.
Every day I am in constant pain and I have been struggling with the loss of my identity and I have been loosing hope. This morning and while having my coffee I found this article http://www.aolhealth.com/condition-center/chronic-pain/body-broken/ and it brought me to tears! After reading this article I feel validated! She has moved on and that gives me so much hope! I must buy this book! http://www.amazon.com/Body-Broken-Memoir-Lynne-Greenberg/dp/1400067421 so this afternoon I will be taking a trip into town to look for it.