Sorry to hear about the hearing problem. I've had similar problems myself and they're allergy related for whatever that's worth. During the allergy season, critical listening can be nearly impossible here! Good luck with your own situation!
On to the speaker/amp question!
Instead of selling off your headphones, why not buy some decent speakers that won't break the bank? I was thinking of something like the Axiom M3Ti @ $280 USD a pair; they've been getting raves from goodsound, soundstage, and others. At 93 dB SPL you'll be able to choose from some more modestly powered amps, too. The only problem is that you cannot biwire them, without mods. If I didn't already have my little Infinity IL10's, I'd probably be buying the Axioms myself, based on the reviews. I have not heard the Axiom's myself though, so take this with a grain of salt, please. Biwiring did make a big improvement on my Infinity IL10's, by the way.
There are quite a few well regarded amps in the under $500 USD market; NAD, Creek, and Cambridge are all names to consider (the Creek a300 can be had for around $300 USD). I'd suggest that you go to www.hifichoice.co.uk
and take a look at their reviews (they have 2 sections of reviews that are accessible from their home page).
Wire is a field unto itself; there are numerous homebrew cables out there by Jon Risch, Steve Rochlin and Chris VenHaus. It's not hard to build some decent sounding interconnects and speaker cables.
As a late breaking addition to this, check out the review of the new Diva Swans M200 Media Speakers athttp://www.enjoythemusic.com/magazin...1/swanm200.htm
They might be just what you had in mind in the first place, and they're self powered to boot!
You could have your entire system for well under a grand and keep your headphones so that when you're feeling bettter you'll still be able to use them too!
Hope this has been of some use!
Good luck again!