I started drivers ed on the day of my 17th birthday back in June 2006 waking up at 6am every morning of my summer. I never finished because I indicated on my form that I'd had a seizure in 2005. After 2 months of drivers ed and successfully passing the classroom portion, I got the devastating news that I would be permanently denied of a drivers license. My pediatric neurologist whom I hadn't seen since I was a kid, indicated on my medical records that not only did I not have any peripheral vision but I also had epilepsy. During this time I was deeply depressed. I was being picked on every day at school, my only friend ditched me for her new boyfriend, and to top it off, I had no left field vison, no use of my left hand, and a very visible limp. While my peers were bragging about their forst jobs and people younger than I were getting new cars, I was getting turned down from jobs and had to come to the realization that I would never be able to change anything because of the stroke. I walked away away from home many times and even did things like taking too much of my pain medicine. Just the thought that I was being permanently denied of a license because of things beyond my control made me see no point in living. I was tired of being trapped in my dungeon of a bedroom. I wanted freedom. I wanted to get away but the DMV was telling me that would never be an option.
I went back to the DMV when I turned 18 in June 2007 thinking I would be given an clean slate as an adult. After passing the written test, the sign test, and the vision test, I approached the desk of the examiner. She asked about my hand and called the medical review board who told her I STILL could not get a license. I took home more medical papers, waited, and was told I needed a special vision test. I went to another town to take that test in hopes that I would finally get my license, but after waiting was disappointed to read that the dmv still denied me of driving. I took the drivers evaluation test at rehab in hopes that this would make a difference and passed the test but of course the dmv wrote me back still saying NO.
Finally I took matters into my own hand. I traveled to Raleigh and had a hearing with the medical review board in July 2008. I was thrilled when I finally got a letter in the mail saying I could get a learners permit.
A year later, I went to renew my permit but the instructor failed me during the drivers test for not stopping twice at the stop sign, I went back and passed the test but received a letter that I still could only drive with a parent. During these years not only was I waiting an entire year to be reevaluated but I also had to wait months to get appointments with all of my doctors (family physician, neurologist, and optometrist), wait for the paperwork to get back to Raleigh, then wait for Raleigh to make their decision.
After sending in my medical forms to Raleigh in December 2010, what was supposed to take 6-8 weeks turned into 5 months. I finally got a letter in April saying that I was still only approved for a permit with my parents only. I made a post on here and took everyone's advice! I called Raleigh, talked with the medical review board, called the dmv here and was given the wonderful news that as long as I've had my permit for a year and pass the drivers test, I can get my license now. After spending months looking for a car it was time for me to get my first check. I bought my car on June 4 and purchased insurance. I was told I had to get my license within 20 days but I had to wait 2 more weeks so I could get more time off from work. Today was the only day I could get my license. I used all my time from work and my insurance policy would get messed up if I waited any longer. Nervous as ever, I decided to go to a different dmv in a smaller town. I realized my horn didn't work, almost ran off the road when backing in a straight line, and my examiner had to stay on the phone with the dmv in Raleigh for nearly 15 minutes waiting for confirmation that I didn't have to drive with a parent anymore, but I am proud to say I passed the driver's test and today I was awarded my driver's license!
First God gave me friends in college when I used to be friendless, then he gave me a job for people with disabilities when I used to get turned down for being disabled, and now the same people that denied me of a license so many times before, have placed it in my hand. I can't believe it. It feels so surreal.