Adjusting to the New Me — Survived Loud Noises, Getting Hit by Drunk Driver Was Life-Changing

Discussion in 'Support' started by Tinhorn, Sep 16, 2019.

    1. Tinhorn

      Tinhorn Member

      Location:
      Buffalo, New York
      Tinnitus Since:
      March 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Struck by car (drunk driver) fractured skull.
      Greetings all. Joined the forum almost two months ago but haven't posted since my introduction post "Greetings from Buffalo" on Aug. 4th.

      Been doing lots of reading up since then. I am 52 years old. Never had any hearing problems all my life and was certainly subjected to lots of noise for years, no problems.

      Started playing guitar at 12, 40 years ago. Lots of bands, jam sessions, etc. No problems.

      4 years in the Marine Corps as a Huey helicopter mechanic/doorgunner, no problems. Always while "on the flightline" there would be fighter jets taxiing by, landing/taking off. Mostly F-4 Phantoms which were notoriously loud with their G.E. J79 jet engines, "shake the fillings out of your teeth" loud, no problem.

      Saw "the loudest rock band in the world", Deep Purple in '85 live in concert. Was 10 feet from the stage right in front of a row of Marshall stacks, reputedly 120 decibels, no problem.

      Worked construction and factory jobs for years, no problem.

      Was walking on the side of the road one night in February and was hit by a drunk driver who left me lying in the road with a fractured skull and he took off. Awoke from the coma it put me in a month later with tinnitus. Big problem. Was in the hospital from Valentine's day until July 3rd with an almost nonstop roaring in my ears. The doctors tell me I have nerve damage and will likely wear hearing aids for the rest of my life but my hearing may improve with time. Sucks to be me.

      My days as a guitar player are over with save for fingerpicking on a nylon string classical from time to time but the Les Paul never sees the light of day anymore. Anyway, just venting and wishing the best for everyone here.

      BTW, that bag of excrement that hit me and took off was caught by the State Police, .19 B.A.C. He was charged with DWI, Aggravated Vehicular Assault and is looking at prison. The toxicology done on me in the trauma center was completely clean. I don't drink or use any drugs.
       
      • Hug Hug x 5
    2. all to gain

      all to gain Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      June 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      ototoxic reaction
      That's some story! Lucky to be alive, but unlucky to have tinnitus.

      I was once hit by a car but got off with only a dislocated elbow.

      What are you doing to cope with the tinnitus? Adjusting is difficult; live your whole life one way and then something comes along to wreck it. It's hard to take in.
       
      • Like Like x 1
    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Tinhorn

      Tinhorn Member

      Location:
      Buffalo, New York
      Tinnitus Since:
      March 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Struck by car (drunk driver) fractured skull.
      Thanks, ATG. What am I doing? Coping I guess. Isn't that what we are all doing? Still very much "on the mend" as it were, I got banged up pretty good.
      Had a minor surgical procedure Thursday ( under general anesthesia) to correct a muscle in my left eye which was out of place so that my left eye looked slightly upward as the right was looking straight ahead, so I had double vision all this time as well.
      The only other bone I broke was my left cheekbone, flattened to my face. That was fixed while I was in the coma. My legs were both banged up pretty well but not broken, thankfully. Still very stiff and sore though. My right hip was extremely sore for the longest time as well but is not so much an issue now. Once I was awake from the coma and in a regular hospital room I took a ride with my sister to the impound lot where the car that hit me was towed to. The passenger side front fender was mashed in and the passenger side mirror -at the same hight as my sore right hip- was gone, sheared off.
      Anyway, could have been worse, I am still alive and not in a wheelchair.
      One day at a time dude, its all any of us can do.
      I won't be returning to work any time soon, not the job I did for the past several years anyway, unloading pallets from semi trailers on a 10,000 lb forklift. Am looking forward to reviving my old hobby though, blacksmithing. I was very worried the whole time I was in the hospital about what had become of all my tools. Had (still have) large gaps in my memory. Due to the huge wallop my brain took until one day it dawned on me, the entire contents of my blacksmith shop are in a storage unit, safe and sound.
      I put all those tools together 10 to 15 years ago, before blacksmithing was featured on a few T.V. shows and became "popular". Anvils, etc. were always hard to find but now even more so and going for crazy money, if you can find one. So that's what I'm looking forward to, banging out some patio furniture, wine racks, etc. I'm actually pretty good at it and enjoy it to. Anyway, that's what I'm looking forward to, and learning how to cope with this infernal noise iin my head. Take care, one day at a time. DanO.
       
    4. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      Hopefully you will benefit from one of the new treatments that are in the pipeline. If you tinnitus doesn't fade, keep in mind that many people habituate and feel better about their tinnitus by 18-24 month mark...
       
    5. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Tinhorn

      Tinhorn Member

      Location:
      Buffalo, New York
      Tinnitus Since:
      March 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Struck by car (drunk driver) fractured skull.
      I hope that is in the cards for me. Have a new favorite song now too, "The Sound Of Silence" by Simon and Garfunkle, go figure...
       
      • Hug Hug x 1
    6. Selah1281

      Selah1281 Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      So sorry to hear about all you’ve been through. I can’t imagine having to go through that ordeal. As Bill said hopefully one of the treatments in the pipeline will help.
       
    7. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Tinhorn

      Tinhorn Member

      Location:
      Buffalo, New York
      Tinnitus Since:
      March 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Struck by car (drunk driver) fractured skull.
      It may seem inconsequential but I'll take any measure of improvement at this point. Had an appointment with my audiologist Dr. this past week and she says I have actually shown some improvement since when last she saw me five weeks ago. Those improvements may seem glacially slow but in my estimation are improvements nonetheless.

      Going back to early summer by comparison the audiologist I saw then towards the end of my five month hospital stay is someone I refer to not by his name but by the moniker "big floppy clown shoes", asshat that he is. He didn't even bother to examine me, just flipped through some pages on a chart and said to me rather curtly "you have nerve damage", as if to say there was nothing he could do for me and no hope. This after two hours in the waiting room for an 11:00 a.m. appointment to see him, he finally materialized at 1:00 p.m.

      My current audiologist takes the time to be very thorough examining me and going over my charts afterwords explaining her opinions which is very enlightening by comparison. I like her.

      So that's where I am, just a few baby steps down a long road of recovery but I'll take it. Steps in the right direction are better than no steps at all and no hope, I now have hope.

      That is a vast improvement from where I was the moment I awoke from the coma in March after being hit by the car in February and learned what had happened to me, pedestrian hit by a drunk driver and left in the road with a fractured skull. That was the moment the tinnitus set in, the moment I awoke from the coma. It gets better, as glacially slow as it may seem it does get better and I'll take it.
       
      • Optimistic Optimistic x 2

Share This Page

Loading...