Sunday, February 22, 2009
A shot in the arm
No one likes getting shots, right? Then why, oh, why did I sign up to get injections in my arm on a regular basis for the next year or so? I guess its because my love of breathing outweighs my abhorrence of pain. After several years of wheezing and sneezing, watery eyes and itchy nose, taking 4 prescription medications daily, I decided to get allergy shots. Its not a quick program. 2 shots a week for the first 10 weeks. 1 shot per week for the next 10 weeks, 1 shot every other week for the next 10 weeks, so on and so forth for about a year. Hopefully, at the end, I will not need my daily medications any more and as long as I live in California, I should be protected from the allergens that bother me. It's a gamble. Approximately 45 shots versus a lifetime of medications. I psych myself up for the first appointment. I can do this. It's going to hurt, but only for a few seconds. I am tough. My mom will buy me a candy bar. When I was a kid my mom made all of her children a deal. If you have to get a shot, you get a candy bar. Two shots? Two candy bars! Now I don't really expect my mom to buy me candy bars for allergy shots, especially not 45 of them over the next year, but I can trick myself into anticipating one and it gives me a little more courage. Actually, I think I was the child who caused this bribery. It was the day I embarrassed my mom to death. And I was not so young that I can't remember it. We were at the Dr's office. I had to get a shot in my bum. I screamed and cried and kicked the nurse as hard as I could. I believe I was wearing moon boots. Many times my mother has reminded me of how I embarrassed her with this tantrum. Luckily, the thought of a candy bar gives me courage and restraint. Tuesday. Shot number one; left arm. Not too bad, really. The nurse pinched the back of my upper arm so hard I did not even feel the needle. That flab comes in useful for something. Thursday. Shot number two; right arm. Also not too bad. Fairly quick. Week one is finished. Monday. Shot number three. The nurse is trying to tell me something but I am confused. Two bottles of serum are on the counter. I cannot comprehend her question. Another nurse comes over. The Dr. made a mistake when ordering my serum. He forgot to include something. Now I will have to have two injections every time I come in. Are you kidding me? I turn around and the nurse pinches my left arm. It hurts. Then she grabs my right arm. I feel the needle going in. I am mad. Mom, I think I'm going to need 90 candy bars this year or else I just might kick another nurse.