Thursday, November 19, 2009

Needle Neurosis and Other Issues

Remember back in March when I became a robot for a day? I mean, nothing is more fun than having several strangers slap electrodes on my bare boobies and smear slime all over my chest in order to tell me that NOTHING WAS WRONG. Except my body is all, fuck you, yes there is something wrong and you better figure it out or never sleep again, which is why I'm still trying to figure out what's wrong with me 8 months later.

Remarkably, most problems, minus the insomnia, lessened when I lost my job. This is probably because I was wandering around slack jawed in this state, which can only be described as a mixture of shock and holy-shit-put-this-chick-in-a-straight-jacket-and-commit-her-crazy-ass for several weeks making it hard to notice or do much of anything besides breathe, cry and throw shit against the wall during the occasional "why me?" temper tantrum. When I partially snapped out of it, I began to notice stabby pains on my right side and in my back.

The true "oh shit" moment came when I went to Denver in October and woke up one night to a some sort of demonic creature sitting on my ribcage jamming an ice pick into my chest repeatedly. I had to convince my 26-year-old self that it was nearly impossible that I was having a heart attack even though the pain had now spread into both of my shoulders. Three hours of pacing and worrying later, it subsided enough for me to sleep.

I never quite trusted a medical professional or the field of medicine until I saw a neurologist for my migraines this past summer. I've had them since high school, but the fact that, in the past year, regular drugs have stopped working and they've gotten so bad that I was sure I was going to die while contemplating army crawling to the hospital, since you know, my vision was too blurred and I was too busy vomiting to drive a car, made me decide to take drastic measures. Now, I take and keep this miraculous drug he prescribed me constantly at my side and it makes me want to kiss Dr. Neurologist's feet in gratitude. Anyway, Dr. Neuro wanted me to get a lipid profile blood test done to see if my lovely family history has passed it's heart diseasy and stroky gifts on to me.

Since they were going to jab me with needles anyway and I hadn't resolved my "chest is stabby" problem, I decided to get it all over with at once last Friday. My favorite part was how I was supposed to fast for 12 hours before the test, which I totally did...right after I ate a fat cheeseburger. I wanted my last meal to be memorable since 12 hours is an eternity you know. So, when the doctor is all, "your test results concern me and you're probably going to die tomorrow of multiple heart attacks," I'll coyly ask, "Does it matter that right before the fasting, I ate half a cow with cheese?"

I also enjoyed it when my doctor was chatting with me about how to remedy insomnia and she reminded me that my bed is not for reading or laptops, but strictly for "sleep and sex," then I said, "what sex?" Just because she's a professional doesn't mean she's safe from all that is me, plus she of all people knows just how severe my case of the crazies is.

When the doc suggested that perhaps it wasn't my heart being an asshole, but my gallbladder, this did not ease my mind since Kate had her gallbladder ripped out a few months ago and it has done some fairly hideous things to her body. Then it was off to the lab so the vampires , sadists techs could suck four vials out of me.

First of all, the techs pretty much know you're going to be a pain in the ass when you ask to lay down to have your blood drawn. I don't even mess with that damn chair anymore because it hurts like a bitch when I inevitably fall out of it - physically and mentally. I mean, really, I'm saving them the work of having to stitch up the giant crack the tile floor would leave in my head. One of the last times I braved the chair I didn't exactly completely pass out of it, but that might have been because I was so distracted by the fact that the doctor told me my boobs felt like bubble wrap.

Just having the lady poke my veins around with her finger made me all sorts of twitchy. Then she started in on lefty. I breathed deeply and I thought I was going to be OK until she said, "it stopped flowing."


Oh, it's probably just because I now have zero blood pressure since I am, in fact, actually dead. I am the first woman that died from squem-ing out while having her blood drawn. Beads of sweat formed on my hairline and ran down my temples as I tried not to hyperventilate while she fucking MOVED THE NEEDLE AROUND IN MY ARM. Just as I was seeing gray spots on the ceiling and almost yelled, FOR GOD MOTHERFUCKING SAKES! GIVE UP! TAKE IT OUT BEFORE I DIE! (That's what she said) She stopped and I laid on the table in a state of comatose while she went to get other dude.

Then, of course, other dude comes obliviously charging over to an extremely pale righty with needle and tourniquet blazing and I have to stop him with the threat of my vomit all over his face. I didn't cause a scene, or cry, but I made them aware that I was not OK. Seriously, lights were dimmed and water was administered and several minutes of gathering myself ensued before I let him touch me.

More sweat poured, but at least the blood continued to come out this time. After he wrapped it up, I laid there some more so my blood pressure could go back up enough for me to drive home without passing out on the steering wheel. I sincerely apologized, like I always do, and asked for some tips on how to not freak the fuck out every time I have to get a blood test and do you know what they said?

"You just have to GROW OUT OF IT."

Really? Is that what you're going to tell my 63-year-old father when he reacts in much the same way? I'm fairly certain this is a legitimate inherited phobia and not a LEARNED phobia, since I never saw or heard my father talk about his needle neurosis when I was younger and my cousin Jake also has the same freak of nature problem. There has to be some methods to curing or lessening this besides "growing out of it." I realize it's ridiculous because it doesn't hurt, but I genuinely cannot help it. It is the worst, most helpless, most uncomfortable, most uncontrollable feeling I've ever experienced. Basically, I go into shock every time a needle hangs out in my arm. I hate the feeling, I hate the fact that I can't make it stop and I hate the damn people that tell me to just "grow out of it." Thanks for your understanding and compassion...dicks.

Anyway, it's over, I didn't vom nor pass out and I'll hopefully know which part of my body is being a crapass very soon.

However, I do have this other problem involving me being the perpetual third or fifth wheel. See, now, my friends aren't usually the type to make me feel as such, like Kate and Sam jokingly (and lovingly, I might add, dammit) call me their adopted daughter or second wife (I'm crazy-fuck Mormon compound Nicki, ahhhh!), but for some reason it just hit me tonight that I've been the token single chick for an uncomfortable amount of time. My last boyfriend worked weekends, so even then it was just me tagging along.

Granted, I am quite the entertaining third or fifth wheel in that I usually get drunk and cartwheel through the bar or say something inappropriate to some assbag using a cheesy pickup line, but it would be nice to have at least another single lady to play with or heaven forbid, a real live guy that could come along and be my date because that male mannequin I've been dragging around is kind of needy and isn't much for conversation.

Lacey's birthday celebration is this Saturday night and I need a date. Anybody free? No penis required, but it is appreciated.


Anonymous said...

Oh man, I'm sorry for your pain and that horrible testing thing. I think you're not alone in feeling absolute terror at needles and tests and the like. It's common. I've had several surgeries in my life (ok, three) and been poked and prodded with needles every damn where so I'm ok with it although I'd rather not look while they're doing it, but I understand the fear too. Ultimately I'd rather they stuck me with 500 needles than poked around in my lady area or squeezed my mammories between two giant metal sheets. :)

I hope your pain turns out to be something reasonably minor and totally fixable. You're young and medicine's a wonderful thing these days.

God don't I sound like a fucking ray of sunshine? Holy crap.

Luna said...

sorry about that. that really sux. i hate needles too. i used to get poked quite a bit when i was younger. how i hated it.


View my page on Twenty Something Bloggers