Monday, April 8, 2013

Pincushion

I'd like to think that I can take my lumps. I'm tough. But some days, your pain tolerance and patience run thin and everything just goes to hell in an handbasket. Last Tuesday I went for my monthly infusion of my wonderdrug. Usual day, usual time, usual nurse. Nothing new here - except it was a little colder outside, and my veins were not as prominent as usual. But I live in Ottawa, and unlike parts of our winter where it was -40, a cool spring day of 0 degrees should not send my veins into hiding.

And hide they did. Four, count em - FOUR tries it took to get an IV line into me. It was demoralizing and depressing, painful and unpleasant and overwhelming upsetting.

In the end, the nurse wrapped my hand in a warm compress to bring the veins up, and that finally did the trick. But not before there were a reasonable number of holes in my hands, wrists and arms to make me look like an IV drug user. Well, ok, not like an IV drug user - I'm sure they hide their needle marks more creatively, but I certainly felt like a pincushion. And I felt small and helpless, which is not a feeling I am used to, comfortable with or interested in repeating.

The whole experience was a reminder that I do live with chronic illness and that it sucks at times. It's painful and difficult and unpleasant. And it's mine to deal with.

A friend of mine introduced me to the Black Keys a little while ago - where have they been all my life? So while I was licking my IV wounds lying in my armchair waiting for the IV drip to work its magic, I put some tunes on - Lonely Boy. A rockin' song to get me through my less than rockin' day.

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