Friday, March 18, 2011

And Then a Retired Convict Stabbed Me With a Needle

That title has so much promise, doesn't it?

I finally went to the doctor.  I say finally because this is what the husband has been dealing with since September:  "I don't feel good.  I'm nauseous.  I think I'm going to throw up.  I just threw up.  I dry-heaved.  Nothing came up because I'm too sick to eat.  I have a headache.  I'm dizzy.  I almost passed out today.  I just threw up.  My stomach hurts.  I have pain in my leg.  I think it's a blood clot.  My ears hurt.  I'm dizzy.  I have to throw up.  My uterus hurts.  I think I have a hernia."

The husband has been very caring and supportive: "I'm so sorry you feel bad.  Is there anything I can do?  You still feel sick?  I'm so sorry.  Poor baby. I love you.  JUST DIE ALREADY."

Kidding.  The husband would never wish me dead.  Because when you have someone as awesome as me in your life, you want to hold them close.  So close.  So close that maybe you kinda sorta smother them.  To death.

I typed my symptoms into a WebMD type site and it said I am either really stressed out or have pancreatic cancer.

The husband:  I really hope it's just stress.

Seriously, isn't he the sweetest?

It was the "I'm-pretty-sure-I-have-a-hernia" that finally propelled me to the doctor.  I had one of those eight years ago, and while it was really sexy to have a golf ball sized lump protruding from the area between my va-jay-jay and bellybutton, if those things don't get taken care of they can become strangulated.  And I'm not an expert or anything, but there's pretty much nothing sexy about strangulated bowels.  Also?  It hurts.  Badly.  Really really badly.  And?  You could die.

The night before I decided to go to the doctor the husband and I were watching tv.

Me: Ow.  My boob bone hurts.  My elbow hurts.  My skull hurts.  Can I see your phone?

The husband (hands me the phone): Wait.  Why do you want it?

Me: I'm googling bone cancer.

The husband: No.  Give me the phone back.

Me (hysterical): No!  I have to do it!  I have to!  I have to know!

The husband: Fine.  But then give it back.  Do not look up anything else.

Me: Yippee!

The husband: This is not going to end well.

I googled.  The good news?  I do not have bone cancer.  But that's probably because Google said "there's no such thing as a bone boob."  Really Google?  Really?  The bone boob is the bone between your boobs.  Duh.  And you call yourself a doctor, Google.  Honestly.  You should be embarrassed.

What Google lacks in doctor skills it makes up for in Psychiatry because the bad news?  Google said it's a very high possibility I Have Issues.  Hypochondria and Paranoia top the list.

Armed with this information I went to the walk-in clinic.

Me: I think I have a hernia.

The doctor: Here throw this paper sheet over yourself and take off your pants while I stay in the room.

I did, and it was all very 19th century Victorian romance novel, except without the throbbing manhood.  Unfortunately. Thankfully.

The doctor poked and prodded and declared I Did Not Have a Hernia.

The doctor: Anything else wrong?

Me: Uh...well...since you asked...I feel like I have to throw up, I'm dizzy, I'm nauseous, I have lower back pain...

The doctor: Hmmm. 

Me: I think it's all due to stress.  I've been really stressed out lately.  I think if all the stress ends, the symptoms will go away, but I'm afraid they've developed into something really really bad.

The doctor:  Okay, we'll run some tests.  Are you depressed?

Me:  Haha.  What's depression?  Me, depressed?  No way.  Just out of curiosity, how many Tylenol would it take...

The doctor: horrified expression

Me: Oh!  No!  Not that!  I'm not thinking of doing that!  My friends and I have this pool going:  how many Tylenol would it take to fill a bath tub?  The winner gets five bottles of Tylenol to you know, to, uh, take as, uh, needed.

The doctor: I'm going to prescribe you an anti-anxiety drug.  Have you heard of Xanax or Ativan?

Me: YES!!  I mean, I may have heard of them.

The doctor:  I'm writing you a prescription for Ativan.

Me: Great!  How much you think they're going for on the street these days?

The doctor: raised eyebrows

Me: Kidding!  Kind of.

The doctor: Pee in this cup and then the nurse will take blood.

I pee, return back to the room, clench my fist and start pumping.  Why do I do this?  Well...

When I was fourteen, I got sick.  Really really sick.  My knees swelled up to the size of grapefruits,  my elbow swelled to the size of a golf ball and I had golf ball sized protrusions on my neck.  In other words?  I was hot.

I went to a lot of doctors and had a lot of blood work done to determine what was wrong with me.  But my veins?  They're blood whores and wanted to keep my blood all to themselves.  The doctors had to use butterfly needles - as in, the needles they use on babies cuz they have itty bitty baby veins - to extract my blood.  Even with the butterfly needles, they had to stick me four times, every time, to get my blood.

I handled this very well.  Especially when, after one particularly let's-use-you-as-a-pin-cushion doctor's visit, we found out that my blood got lost on its way to the lab.  My poor mother had to tell me that I had to go get stabbed forty times again and it was the end of the freaking world.  You would have thought she told me I was having my limbs lopped off to be replaced with lobster claws and I would always smell like rotten fish and no one would love me and I could never go in the sun again because my claws would cook and starving children across the world would come after me and start gnawing on my giant claws.

The best was when I had to go to the arthritis doctor.  Arthritis doctor = I-stare-at-old-saggy-people-all-day-and-you-are-young-and-spry-so-I-am-going-to-molest-you.

The doctor was all "take off your shirt so I can feel you up."  And I was all "but the lumps and bumps are on my knees, elbow and throat.  Why do you need to see my boobs?"

I left the visit screaming and crying that I had been molested and my stepdad was all "what the hell happened in there?"  And my mom was all, "nothing. you know K and her dramatics."  Except my mother didn't say that because she is totally supportive.

After feeling me up, the arthritis doctor wanted me to have blood drawn because of course he did.  I started sobbing and wailing and he was all "don't worry, my nurse has never missed a vein in 20 years.  She'll get you the first time."

Guess what?  The bitch missed.

She dug the needle around in my vein. You could see it poking my skin and almost come out the other side.  It took three more sticks for her to get blood.  When she was finished, I took the needle and stabbed her in the eye.

I wish.

The good news about all that was I developed a system for making my veins fat and juicy, hence the fist clenching and pumping referred to earlier.

While I clenched and pumped, waiting for the nurse to come stick me, I started getting anxious.  Really really anxious.  I started dry heaving.  And getting dizzy.  And things started getting dark.  I thought I was going to pass out.  But I didn't because I was all get it together!  Seriously, no amount of training can make you this kind of awesome.  You're just born with it.

The nurse came in.  He was big and bald, with a goatee and LOTS of tattoos.

Me:  You're the nurse? You look like you just got out of prison.

The nurse:  That's because I did just get out of prison.

I suddenly felt much better about getting my blood drawn.  Prisoners are experts with needles.  That's why they all have such great tattoos.

He got my blood with the first stick.

The moral of this story is twofold:

1.) If you ever need to have blood work done, drive to your state prison and ask for the most tatted up dude there.

2.) My pee work and blood work came back normal.  My doctor's visit was three weeks ago.  My prescription for Ativan sits in my purse, unfilled.  Because the thought of taking anti-anxiety meds makes me anxious.  And also?  Recent studies show the number one side effect of anti-anxiety meds is your limbs falling off and lobster claws growing in their place.  And I think we all know how that ends.  Not well, my friends.  Not well.


  1. I was really hoping that after your pee analysis, the doctor told you you were pregnant. Hence the nausea.


  2. You are so talented. What a vivid picture you paint. Also, please fill that prescription and take it. I promise you won't grow lobster claws! And even if you did, the husband would love you anyway. And so would the mother-in-law.

  3. You know, I used to be on medication whose main side effect was the lobster claw thing, and it wasn't nearly as bad as I thought it would be. In fact, it was pretty cool being able to threaten people who pissed me off without ever being arrested for carrying a concealed weapon. You should definitely take those meds. :-)

  4. I poke other people's veins for a living. I'd poke mine, too, but that would be pretty hard. I'm a good shot, but I still miss sometimes. Maybe I should go to my friendly neighborhood prison and have daily practice sessions with the most tatted up dude there. For a week, at least.

    Here from Lady Bloggers. Love the way you write!

  5. oh you are funny. neurotic my dear, but funny!
    I really enjoyed you sharing your Oprah interview fantasy with me in your comment. For me, it's always about getting on The Today Show. lol
    Really nice to 'meet' you fellow Lady Blogger. :-)

  6. Remember our deal Auntie Kiki. I get pregnant when you get engaged. Have anything you want to tell me? Hmmm?

  7. Please, please, please fill your prescription and the next time you decided to get all dizzy, and things start to get dark take one. Heck take a half if you want to...and welcome to the wonderful world of Benzos. Now, for a person who is not anxious it sounds like I am trying to get you addicted to drugs so you can go to that rehab in California with Dr. Drew and meet all those drug addict celebrities. But no, for people like you and I these sorts of drugs make us have (believe it or not) rational/non panic filled/slower than racing thoughts. I know it sounds like magic or vodoo or both but it is not. You don't have to take it when you are just slightly nervous, but you know on those days when you cannot have two calm thoughts in a row or your brain will cramp/the world will end/you will develop cancer or some rare disease only one other person in the world has, on those days, take one. I PROMISE it will make your anxiety more manageable. Ps. It probably takes about a half an hour to start working, so if you are going to say, have your blood drawn it would be great if you could take it while you are sitting in the waiting room.

    Also-AMAZING blog as usual. You are such a talented writer. I can stop laughing/commiserating when I read your writings. I love them! Please write more!!



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