The Countdown Continues…. And VAMPIRES!

23 days to go and the training continues.

I can’t run every day yet (and I’m not sure that daily running is a great idea) so for the morning workout, I alternate running and a yoga/pilates blend with a full-on yoga class on either Saturday or Sunday, depending on what time the Steelers play.

In case you are unaware, I am scared of needles. Not knitting needles, not sewing needles, but those hollow-tip mofos that burrow into my arm and try and steal my life sustenance. Why? Why do I have such an irrational fear particularly since I’m sporting three tattoos and four ear piercings along with previously having had my tongue and bellybutton pierced? Well, let me tell you.

WARNING! If you are squeamish or share my fear, you might want to skip ahead a couple paragraphs.

When I was but a young lass, I used to have the most horrendous headaches. Could this be before everyone knew what migraines were? Maybe. At any rate, my dutiful parents took me to the hospital because I swore up and down that my head would explode at any second although I could barely keep my eyes open long enough to complain. My mom tried to keep me awake on the way to the hospital but I still dozed off.

Upon arrival to the hospital, my mother gave the pertinent information and in we went. That’s right, in we went. Do you remember those days? When you didn’t have to wait 4 hours in the ER to be seen? Once inside, a nurse came over to draw blood. I am quite certain that it is with this wench that my fears began. Right now, at 35 years old, I have tiny veins that are quite difficult to see, (thankfully, phlebotomists have come a long way) so you can imagine how they would’ve looked about 25 years ago. She prepped me and then poked me. And missed. And pulled out. And poked me again. And missed. (geez, this sounds like a porn) Instead of pulling out the second time, she instead decided to just move the needle around in my arm until she struck red gold.

That. Shit. Hurts. Like. Hell.

That was it, I was traumatized. It never really got any better. My veins didn’t get bigger and the skin on my arms didn’t get any lighter which meant I dreaded any forced bloodletting. I have never donated blood in my life. It used to be that I didn’t weigh enough and then when I did, I started getting inked and pierced annually so they wouldn’t want my blood and I didn’t have to feel bad about not donating.

Once, a phleb went in one arm, poked around, couldn’t find anything, went in the other arm, still couldn’t find anything, and then ended up having to go in the top of my hand. FYI, by the time she made it to top of the hand, my roommate was physically holding me down in the chair trying to get me to calm down. Probably didn’t help that I was mildly hungover and super grumpy as I had just lost my, ahem, friend, at the time.

Back to current day, this morning to be precise. It was time for the annual bloodletting. I hate it, but if I’m paying out the nose for my insurance bi-weekly, I’m damn sure gonna use it for all it’s worth. Fortunately, I had made an appointment because I might have gone ballistic if I had to sit in there with the oldies but moldies and no one to talk to.

I’m happy to report that this morning’s phleb at least had full use of all ten of her fingers. I am NOT down on anyone with a disability, but it isn’t comforting when you’re already nervous for your phleb to have 3 out of 5 fingers fused together on one hand. With the nails painted. #truth

A testiment to the advancing knowledge of phlebs, she knew to use the butterfly before I had to ask for it. In her idle chatter to keep my mind off of things, she tells me how she doesn’t really like using the butterfly because it makes the blood just. drip. out. BLORF! But hey! Not in my case! “The blood is just POURING out of you!” Double BLORF. 5 tubes later she was done minus the blood she dripped on my arm. Look, I know it’s mine, but I still don’t wanna see it.

And so, I survived another year. In another few days I can impress you all with the results of my bloodwork. I know you’re on the edge of your seat……

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