Friday, June 6, 2014

Needles and me—a family story

My daughter-in-law posted a story about her daughter having to have blood drawn, and mentioned that it was a scary situation for A. Well, I can completely relate to that so here’s a little story about me and needles.

I have always feared needles. Maybe it’s because I had more than a couple of penicillin shots as a kid (those suckers hurt) or maybe it’s just the needles—regardless, any trip to the doctor that involved needles also involved tears.

When I was nine or ten, my parents started the process to adopt a child. In addition to home studies and background checks and I don’t even know what else, we also all had to have physicals. And those physicals meant we needed to have blood drawn. Since my dad was an M.D., he did the physicals and blood draws.

Everything went fine until it was my turn to have blood drawn. This time, in addition to crying (at least I’m pretty sure I cried), I also ran. I ran all over that tiny house: down the stairs, up the stairs, into the kitchen, I mean I just flat out bolted. He couldn’t catch me and was absolutely furious. At the time, it seemed as though I ran forever, but it was probably more like a couple of minutes because truly, the house was pretty small.

Mom saw that things weren’t going well and managed to both get Dad to stop chasing and me to lie down on my bed. I do remember crying then, probably from the adrenaline dump, and my mom rubbed my hand. I calmed down enough that Dad could get the blood and yes, I felt it but I didn’t act out any more.

Over the years, I’ve gotten much better at handling my fear of needles but it’s never gone away. Some of the reactions are involuntary (I have puked when getting an IV installed because those suckers hurt), but I no longer cry from fear. I still hate them though, and I guess I always will.

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