Nov 17, 2007

It's just a needle...

I have to give myself shots every day when I'm pregnant. I've done it with the last two, I've been doing it with this one for the past 6 1/2 months.

People have asked me, "how do you do that to yourself? How can you stick a needle in your own skin?"

I asked myself the same question, the first few times I had to do it. I stared at the packaging, stared at the needle with it's little cap, stared at the bubbly medication inside the tube of the syringe. I stared for a good ten minutes, then brought the needle to my skin a few different times before I had the courage to actually stick myself. I'm no herculean sort of person when it comes to needles... I'm actually a lot more queasy than most people.

How do you do it? You think to yourself, this hurts a lot less than a blood clot would. It hurts a lot less than an IV pump. It hurts a lot less than a pulmonary embolism, and in a much more close-to-home sort of way, it hurts a heckuva lot less than labor.

I do my breathing exercizes, practicing ignoring the pain. It really does work. But you know what I have discovered, this pregnancy, works better?

*read ahead only if you're not going to be offended*

"It's just a needle, dammit."

I don't swear. Not a swearing kind of girl. It makes me blush to be writing this on my blog. But for some reason, one of my first injections this go-round was taking a few times to work out, and I just thought at myself (maybe even said it aloud,) "It's just a needle, dammit!" And for some reason, it was just fine. Ever since then, this is the mantra I repeat in my head as I look at that teeny, tiny tube of metal that I have to stick in myself. It works. I've tried dang it, and dang it just doesn't cut it the way dammit does. Why? I don't know.

It also works for blood draws. Just the other day, I had to get my platelet levels checked, and they brought that huge ol' needle up to my vein and I thought, "It's just a needle, dammit," and dang. It hardly even hurt much. Seriously.

So, I'm not saying you should swear as a rule, or as a habit. I think, really, this is about perspective, about not taking yourself and your nerve endings too seriously. SO the next time you come upon an unbearable task of some sort... maybe you could try it. If you're not too offended by the idea, that is. :)

8 comments:

Janell said...

You are a tough cookie.

the nice one said...

i too am opposed to swearing but there is a time and a place!!!you go girl!!

Lucy Stern said...

You use whatever word you need to.....It is just a needle and it won't kill you.

Jayne said...

I have so much admiration for you! I didn't know you were expecting a baby (how'd I miss that??), but what I kept thinking while reading your post is that a mother will do whatever she has to do to ensure the life of her child...at least a mother like you. We have all read the horror stories of neglectful, abusive, "sick" mothers, but you're not in those categories.

I applaud your willingness to do whatever it takes, and I hope you and the bambino continue to thrive!

P.S. I hope to respond to that great email of yours later today. It seems that work has been interfering with my "other life."

David L said...

Ah... needles.

I'm one of those strange people that actually likes needles and shots. They have just never bothered me, and I find the idea of injecting something straight into the body fascinating.

I'm obviously a sick person....

Josh and Jennifer said...

Well, obviously I'm a horrible slacker friend because I had no idea you were pregnant! Belated congratulations! So, even with this baby on the way your still planning to adopt? Amazing. But I don't doubt that you can pull it off!
Bummer about the shots, but it's amazing how we can do things -out of necessity- that we never dreamed we would ever be able to do!!

jayne said...

Just so you'll know, I gave blood on Thanksgiving Eve for the first time in 25 years (big chicken), and thinking of your little phrase helped me tough it out. It was kind of humorous actually. Plus, one of my former students who is now a nurse was there donating blood too, and she sat across from me and smiled the whole time as a reminder of the good thing we were doing. She made it seem so effortless that, combined with your mantra, it worked...that is, until it was over and I nearly fainted, but that's a story for another day.

NoSurfGirl said...

Lol, Jayne...

you're a better woman than I. I have yet to give blood. I'm in awe of people who give blood on a regular basis... there, now you know what a true sissy I am whet it comes to needles.

Glad the mantra worked!!