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I had blood drawn today to get my thyroid tested.

While this may not seem like such an accomplishment, this is what happened last time I was in a small room with a needle-wielding healthcare worker. This morning marked the first time a needle has touched my skin in four years, the first time in six years I've had any blood drawn, the first time in more than 20 years that I haven't nearly or actually fainted.

This anxiety has been debilitating -- I've been putting off common medical procedures like cholesterol checks and vaccines for years. I couldn't even handle a finger-stick or look at the sharps box in the doctor's office. I don't even know what my blood type is. But after the tetanus-shot freakout, I started working with a therapist to sort out my fear and overcome it. I've been using this thyroid test as a goal for months, because I really needed to have it done.

And this morning, with my beloved by my side, holding my hand and guiding me through breathing exercises, I did it. I had two small vials of blood drawn, and I didn't faint or panic or die. The phlebotomist was so stellar, I hardly even felt anything -- she is my new best friend! And the nurse even gave me a sucker (and the panda sticker pictured above) for being so brave!

Replies: 11 Confessions

Amy, you deserve an award. Redeem this post for an entire batch of scones and a jar of lemon curd at our next meeting.

elavil @ 04/12/2003 12:13 PM CST


Kick ass!

amyc @ 04/12/2003 12:19 PM CST


OK, fine, we'll kick yr ass as well.

elavil @ 04/12/2003 01:44 PM CST


Don't you love when you stretch yourself just a little bit, and it works out well. Congratulations Amy.. :-)

vince @ 04/12/2003 05:40 PM CST


come online as soon as you can. i'm leaving soon tonight but i wanted to talk to you about something.

niece jobeth @ 04/12/2003 07:03 PM CST


(with party hat on)
yeah, whoo-hoo, all right!!!
good for you. Getting over fears is so hard, but so worth it.
Congrats!

the other amy @ 04/12/2003 07:49 PM CST


I wonder if I could apply this to my fear of Republicans? You know, just walk around and jam them all with sharp objects. I bet it could work.

jhames @ 04/13/2003 05:05 PM CST


I had the same experience, on Thursday. Wow. Seriously: didn't pass out and go into convulsions, first time since 1984. Which is its own story, but still, when your MD suggests you get tx for that post traumatic stress disorder that keeps you up at night and won't allow blood tests, one tends to get defensive.

Congrats, Amy!
And here's to teeny tiny cholestorol numbers and healthy thyroids.

Jessica Donohoe @ 04/14/2003 03:27 PM CST


Yay, Jess!

amyc @ 04/14/2003 08:04 PM CST


I'm also a fainter, which many people find surprising, including the nurse who caught me the last time I almost fainted. "I've heard people say it, but I've never seen them actually do it."

But, I don't quite have the courage to face this head on, yet. I can't even watch someone get an injection on TV without getting queasy and feeling flushed and light-headed.

Congratulations. You are my new super-hero. If only I had a cape to give you.

Cinnamon @ 04/15/2003 05:41 PM CST


Perhaps you could sew me a cape, crafty-girl!

(you don't really have to.)

(Also, I can recommend a great therapist if you ever want to get over that needle fear.)

amyc @ 04/15/2003 09:09 PM CST


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