We completed the ‘physicals’ step in our adoption home study last week. I made a comment about being freaked out by needles in my last home study-related post, and I wish I could say that the experience went easy-breezy, but it didn’t. It was more queasy-MEasy.
After a short wait in the waiting room, the door to our left swung open and we heard someone call out, “Palmer!“. I wasn’t feeling too nervous at this point, but I was relieved that they were allowing us to go back to the panic room, I mean, examination room together.
I tweeted this Instagram photo while we were waiting for the needle, I mean, nurse to come in:
Shortly after that, we heard a knuckle knock-knock on the door and the nurse came in to get the party started. I could feel my pulse quicken as she began to wrap the death gripper, I mean, blood pressure checker around my left arm. “118 over 83. Whew. Maybe I’m not as nervous as I thought“.
After that, she handed us little plastic cups and pointed to the restrooms. I won’t go into detail about this part of the process, but I will say that I am currently smiling as I type this thinking about Kevin wandering the hallway with his sample because he didn’t know where to put it when he was done. (Don’t worry, I introduced him to the little two-sided cubby door in the wall- ha!)
After that, another nurse came in to draw our blood.
I casually-with-a-internal-side-of-very-seriously mentioned, “some friends said I should ask for a butterfly needle”, as she snapped the tourniquet around my upper arm.
I concentrated on breathing. I forced a smile, and when she turned away to prepare the needle I tried to use mental telepathy to get a message over to Kevin: “I don’t think she got the butterfly thing! Should I be saying something else about the butterfly thing?!“. He just mouthed, “You’re okay. It’s gonna be okay.”
Needle nurses never have an easy time with my veins. They hide, they roll…they fight that needle like they’re allergic to it. The last time I had blood drawn, it took three different nurses and six different sticks. No joke. Total swiss cheese moment, for realz.
It took longer for my tube to fill up than Kevin’s, but it only took one stick, and it didn’t hurt that bad, so I was pretty smiley at this point. But then all of a sudden, my arm started hurting from my elbow down to my hand. I asked Kevin if his hurt, and when he responded, “no“, I yanked my sweatshirt back off to see what was wrong.
The area around the needle hole was swelling with a quickness, and needless to say, I was instantly allergic to smiling, too.
The doctor came in a second later and I immediately went into full, “what the heck is going on with my arm” mode. He apologized, and told me that needle must have gone all the way in and through my vein. He also told me to apply pressure for the next five minutes, and was happy to oblige when I made him look me in the eye and (truthfully) repeat the words, “you are not going to die“.
So here we are, a week later. I’m still alive, but man is my arm sore from the elbow down. I’ve got a hard bump the size of a bird egg next to the sticking point, and I’m still black and blue (and yellow and green), but I’m thinking things will be back to normal with it soon.
The next step of our home study involves reading a book called The Connected Child and taking a 10-hour adoption course online. Yay! Reading and writing! I’m definitely not allergic to that.