Today, I surprised myself. I let a nurse stick a needle into my arm and take some blood. I faced one of my fears and I did something that, 6 months ago, I would never have dreamed of going through with… I came out of the nurse’s office in a little bit of shock actually – was I really just that brave? Did I really not even freak out or cry?
Since school, I’ve been frightened of needles. I don’t know whether this fear came from the nasty, emotionless school nurses who gave me my injections in that dusty school hall or the nightmare-inducing time my dentist missed the correct place to jab me over and over and over again until I’d swallowed enough anaesthetic that my throat became numb. They both probably contributed. Either way, needles have sent shivers down my spine, made me feel dizzy and closed up my throat with fear for as long as I can remember.
So, when my doctor told me he’s booking me in for a blood test, I obviously freaked out a little. The idea of someone poking a foreign object into my fragile little veins disturbed me. I only had to wait 4 days, so the dread didn’t drive me completely mad. It did work me up a little more though. When something freaks me out this much, I tend to avoid it. Crowds, heights, tight spaces, noisy places… I keep them off limits. That’s pretty much the basis of my personality but, importantly, it’s something I’m working on fixing. This wasn’t something I could just avoid though!
Despite the looming needle, I had a lovely morning. I had to take the morning off work so I could go to the doctors and, with him in between his degree and PGCE at the moment, Matt could come with me and hold my hand. I wasn’t as spooked as I thought I would be.
Honestly, the entire process was completely fine. I’ve never had a blood test before so I didn’t know what to expect but my nurse was fantastic and she made me feel so comfortable. I had a tight band around my arm, I felt a tiny, sore little prick and then a weird gushing feeling… but it didn’t hurt. She’d already began to fill the second vial before I even clocked on to what was happening!
I know it seems like such a simple thing to be so happy with but I’m so proud of myself. I thought my fears would get the better of me and turn me into a sobbing pile of patheticness. It’s such a big deal for me. Matt was so proud of me too. “You didn’t even make a noise” he said, because I’m sure we both thought I’d squeal or yelp or something. He even bought me some beautiful white roses to cheer me up and to tell me how brave I was! What a sweetie.
How are you today, friends?
You can read my previous post here.
Photographs are my own. © Morgan Mills.