Thursday, August 09, 2007

Getting back on the bloody horse

Had a bit of trauma at the blood bank yesterday.

First, there was some concern that my iron count was too low, but they tested my blood and pronounced me good to go. During those five minutes, I decided I wasn't even going to try to donate any more. Saved lives be damned, I don't need the hassle of having my finger pricked (right after getting stung by a bee) only to be rejected.

Then, the tech hit a nerve, literally it seems, when sticking me with the needle, after declaring that I had three good veins on my left arm. The first two times I gave blood, it hardly hurt. The last time, I felt some discomfort, but hey, think about what it must be like for chemotherapy patients.

Last night, it was excruciating. After sticking me, she moved the needle and there was an electric, shooting pain all the way down my forearm. She adjusted it again, and I said, "That's really bad." So she took it out. It continued to sting well after the needle was out and an ice pack was pressed on my forearm.

My options were to go home or to give up my other arm. While they were prepping my right arm, I cursed my altruistic self. What assurance did I have that things wouldn't go horribly awry again? But I knew that if I left, I'd never be back, and think of all the lives! Think about how much easier this is than chemotherapy!

So she stuck my right arm, and maybe my pain receptors were too busy with the left arm, but it went in like butter. No problems.

The left arm hurt until I went to bed last night, even all through The Simpsons Movie, which I sat through with an ice pack. The tech told me I'd have a bruise, but you know what? It's only a little bit sore. Both arms have just one track mark each. I was worried about having a giant swollen purple Popeye arm, like my high school boyfriend did after giving blood.

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