It’s been almost six months since I was unexpectedly force to turn a new leaf.
I lost my hearing in my left ear. I can’t hear. It closed like a store going out of business.
Here is what happened…
I’m a survivor.
We heard this saying many times before, “You can be hear today and gone tomorrow.” Boy, did this prophetic saying consume me on Friday, October 25th 2013. It was a normal cold day for me before New York endured a brutal winter. I had just finished my class. Friday ended another dramatic week between my soul mate and I. Still regurgitating my mix feelings from that I decided to a Vogue competition to pay homage for those who had died the past year. I got there late however, because of my class. Me and many other late comers were stranded cold outside H.M.I.
It was very funny because, we were trying so hard to go to a place that was over capacity instead of just giving up and going home. People called others to sneak them in, others used their political powers, some made it in others including me didn’t. One of my haus members said on 14th Street in a center there held another “function.” So the leftovers decided “hey why not.” So we all walked from Astor place to 13 St. which is roughly a 20 minute walk.
There, I competed against others that participated in this underground culture. Surprisingly, I got my first win. After countless of failed battles I finally won! I was excited to win a 25 dollars best buy gift card. (which I still haven’t used yet, I just don’t know what to buy from there.) This was definitely inspiring to compete in a more major competition involving 500$ for the winner, in little over a month. I celebrated my victory in BBQ’s with a few others drinking and eating, feeling like an outcast, but still being around people was fun.
I‘m on the 6 train heading home. Randomly, a small pain in the back of my neck appeared. I thought it was my du-rag that was on my head was too tight. So, I loosen the head wrap.
Ten minutes pass and the pain literally traced the back of my head to the other side of my ear, from left to right. I then thought, okay, well it’s just a headache from the McDonald I ate earlier. Maybe, I’d just ate and danced too soon.
Twenty minutes passed…
Now, I thought I am just experiencing a migraine as the pain intensified quickly! The pain got so intense that I couldn’t even walk to the bus stop with out stopping every two steps. I would walk with my right hand over my right eye, my left head was massaging the back of my neck. It was night by this time, so I could have just looked in distress or suffering a headache.
This wasn’t a regular headache though. My neck bolting and throbbing constantly in agony, I knew something was up. I aboard sitting right at the front of the bus. There I squirmed, panted, and convulse slightly rushing to get home on the bus. My eyes weighed a ton. The lights around me felt like needles piercing my eyes. The stiffness grew extremely tight to where I couldn’t pull my head back without increasing the the pain already there. Breathing became painful as letting too much oxygen hurt my brain.
When I got off the bus It took me ten minutes to walk home when it would only take three. I would stop mid walk about to wail in pain so high. I wanted to pick up the phone and call my mom downstairs to save me. This crisis whipped me so quickly in a matter of minutes. Trembling, I take out my keys for the lobby door. I took out my keys for my apartment door. I still was in so much pain. I thought, well let me just make some tea, maybe with some tea and a hot shower this headache would simmer.
I grab a pot. Filled it with water. Then, I went to the bathroom looking in the mirror I’m greeted with a face of despair. I grab the ibuprofen. I sit in my foyer squirming again. I’m kicking and panting. The throbbing. The bolts of pain. I grew cold and I said that’s enough. I can’t walk. I desperately was in need for my mom as she was peacefully sleeping. I awake her violently with my cry for help. she jumps out the bed as a mother would saying, “What, Dontae, what is wrong?”
“Mom, I have to go to the hospital I can’t walk my head hurts so bad and it’s so stiff.” Still, I wish I can start crying to some how release the emotions built up. All I can do is put on my shoes. My body was attacking me from the inside and I had to fight against it to mobilize myself. We jumped in the car. My mother questions me about what may have caused this. All I can say was I don’t know!
She grunts and tries to drive at a reasonable fast speed. Its midnight now. We arrived at the emergency room still excruciating and trembling. The distortion of my face prompt the nurses to ready me first for the doctor. As they taking my blood pressure and temperature I scream for them to hurry up and solve this issue. My mom worried immensely argues with the nurses to find a doctor quick. The workers, I hear them. They are trying to calm my mother as she starts to become uneasy.
I purge all the food I had that day. The McDonald’s, the liquor, the chicken from BBQ’s. I even saw a spot of white digested in the mix. The ibuprofen never reached my blood stream. The nurses panic and rushed me to a bed giving me a blue bag to purge into. Eventually, I got stabilized in the emergency room.
I‘m placed in a bed. I’m kicking, screaming, yelling, fidgeting, fussing in the covers. I finally started to cry in agony. I cry out for my mother hurry her to get the doctor. I cry out for my mother to hold my hand. She was my only God at the moment. Breathing too deeply caused immense pressure to the back of my head. Lifting my head up, to the left and right caused immense pressure to the back of my head. There was no escaping the pain…unless I don’t think, just still and bite the bullet.
Hours upon hours I sit in a pool of distraught. The doctor still never came. Eventually…he did.
In tears, describe to the all the situations I am going through and what I feel like. He delivered a few choice words saying how he is going to do a spinal tap. This a process in which they draw liquid from your spine to test for white blood cell count.
…I ball up in a fetal position. He explains the process once more. If I move to much I can paralyze myself as it only take a wrong tap into a neuron.
A minute later he says, “Yeah, It is what I thought it would be. The liquid is extremely cloudy indicating a massive infection. I think you have…”