I had someone ask me yesterday if - or, rather, I had someone assume that - I am used to needles, as often as I get my blood drawn.
Uhhhh... No, no I am not.
I hate it. I have always hated it. And, if anything, I hate needles more now than I ever did before.
Prior to my life as a human pin cushion (also known as: prior to my initial surgery and diagnosis), I hated needles. I have teeny, tiny veins. The words, "hard stick" don't begin to describe me. I gave blood ONE TIME, when I was 18, and had to breathe deeply to make it through the experience without totally losing it. ("Without totally losing it" refers to my: gag reflex, claustrophobia, tendency towards to anxiety attacks and propensity for bursting into tears at the drop of a hat.) Suffice it to say, I'm pretty sure The Red Cross was more than happy NOT to have me volunteer to donate blood, ever again.
I hate the sight of blood. I can't even tell you how many IV's I've had in the last two and a half years, but I can tell you FOR DARN SURE how many times I've watched them go in. ... Never.
I cannot watch the phlebotomist draw my blood, because I get queasy if I see the vial fill. (I just gagged, literally gagged, thinking about it.)
And I'm telling you, it's worse now than it ever was. Before, I was nervous that I might have pain or see my own blood. Now, I have multiple memories of pretty intense pain (nothing's more fun than a nurse, digging for a vein and TALKING about it!) and I've seen my own blood more often than I'd care to discuss.
Not to mention... the bruising.
Keep in mind, this bruise is four days old and is fading. Fast.
So, no. No, I am used to having my blood drawn. No, I am not used to IV's. No, I am not used to MRI's.
And I doubt that I ever will be.
Am I incredibly grateful for modern medicine? Yes! Am I amazed, on a sometimes weekly/monthly basis, what they can tell about what's going on in my body, just by testing my blood? Absolutely! Am I blown away by the technology that will allow a machine to take pictures of THE INSIDE OF MY BODY while I lie inside a tube for a couple hours? ... For sure!
My goodness gracious, I am so grateful for all of the things that testing my blood, inserting IV's and scans can do for me!
I just hate the process(es).
And, I'm sorry to say, I think I always will. (Doesn't mean I'll stop going to the doctor, getting my blood taken, having radioactive matter injected into me, or refuse to let them strap me to a board and then bake me inside a machine for an hour or two. I'll do whatever I have to do. ... But I don't have to like it. Which is lucky, because I don't.)