Two weeks ago, I went in for my normal phlebotomy and again, my hemoglobin was too low. So no phlebotomy and a two week rest period. The news got worse, my ferritin levels have shot back up. It erased all my progress over the last five phlebotomies. That was a big let down.
Fast forward two weeks and yesterday was my appointment. I was prepared, hydrated, and went right back. The only downfall of this visit was I got 'The Manager', instead of my favorite nurse. Let's just say, she's a no nonsense kind of nurse and that doesn't work for me.
I have a needle phobia and the way I am working through it, is to get as many positive experiences 'under my belt' as I can. I'm trying to create a positive association with needles in my brain. The goal is to reduce my anxiety and stress levels that I have prior to every appointment.
Back to 'The Manager', she was no frills with me and just went right to it with the needle. I wasn't able to prepare and she didn't do the numbing spray that I prefer. So the poke hurt more than usual and I threw her some shade. It didn't help me relax or help my positive associations at all.
They tested my hemoglobin and it was still too low!! Even after two weeks. However, it was high enough that I was still able to get a phlebotomy. That was a huge relief. I had to stand up for myself a little bit because I wasn't going to take no for an answer this time.
After the phlebotomy, which went perfectly, 'The Manager' came back to remove the needle. She was a little bit more kind but did her no frill removal and I had an immediate hot flash. I had to take a moment to calm myself before they took my blood pressure. I hope she got the message because that's the last time she's dealing with me!
The whole experience made me a little emotional. Dealing with a needle phobia isn't easy but I am trying. It's psychologically tough so the physical pain doesn't help. It's frustrating to deal with people like that manager because they don't seem to get it. Sometimes a little numbing spray makes it feel a lot better and that makes a huge difference for people like me.
Oh well, on to the next battle!