Haynes still hopeful - Eighth surgery could offer a lifeline to motor vehicle accident victim
Five years after an accident which claimed the life of his best friend and left him with major injuries, Amando Haynes is still clinging to the hope that he will be able to regain the use of his right arm and accomplish many of his dreams.
But the 24-year-old's ambitions hang in the balance, as there is no guarantee that the surgical procedure that he hopes to undertake next month will return functionality to his right hand.
"I always told my mother that I would buy her a house in Mandeville and I missed the chance to do that when I got in this accident; and now I don't know if I will be able to do that before she dies or before I die," Haynes told The Sunday Gleaner last week.
He was the pillion on his best friend's bike, having visited his sister, when it collided with a car. His best friend died. Haynes was in a coma for two weeks and woke not remembering anything that happened on the day of the accident.
Haynes suffered brain damage while his lung was punctured, a blood vessel burst in his neck, his right foot was broken in two places and his right hand was severely damaged.
"Now my arm needs a nerve graft operation which isn't done anywhere in Jamaica. My family and I were in contact with the surgeon abroad who is supposed to do the operation," said Haynes.
"What we had worked out is that he would come to Jamaica and use the Cornwall Regional Hospital to do the operation. He is coming next month. He was supposed to come from last year, but they say he didn't get any clearance from the Government," added Haynes.
This will be the eighth surgery that Haynes would undergo since the accident on August 28, 2011.
"Everything happened on the right side. They took bone from my hip to put in my foot so that I was able to walk again," said Haynes.
"But I have been living with the nerves pain since the day I woke up from the coma, and believe me, it is not normal. I have heard people talk about nerves pain before, but this is seriously heavy, it is hot.
"I am on 200 milligrams of morphine twice a day and that barely helps the pain. There are times when the pain overrides the medication totally and there is nothing I can do; I am curled up like a baby in pain crying. There are days I can't come out of my house to make my family see me in pain, so I am just in my house locked up."
The person who was driving the car involved in the accident was never identified and Haynes was not able to receive any compensation from the rider's insurance, as he was not licensed to carry a pillion.
HIS MOTHER'S SACRIFICE
This left the burden of his treatment on his mother, who had to quit her job to attend to him following his discharge from hospital.
"My mother spent everything she had on my leg to get me walking again. It was so much for her, we still owe UWI (University Hospital of the West Indies) a little less than $2 million right now," Haynes said.
If the former Old Harbour High School student is to regain full use of his arm, his greatest desire is to start working again and resume his dancing.
"The first thing on my mind is to work. Whatever work I can get. I have a certificate in welding, so I probably would find a welding job or something that challenges me, as I like physical work," said Haynes.
"I am a dancer; I had a dancing group and I use to dance for my high school. So I miss dancing a lot and I miss being able to work."