If you know me at all, the fact that I have a child with diabetes has to be the most ironic thing ever. You see, I am so, totally, over-the-top afraid of needles; it's not even funny. Think I'm exaggerating? A few stories:
When I was in grade 6, my class was supposed to go away for a week to Outdoor Ed. I was soooo excited to go. One week of no parents, running amok in the forest while playing games like Capture the Flag and Survival, and eating s'mores? Yes, please! Except that leading up to the trip, I got sick, or was exposed to someone who was sick (I can't really remember), and they thought I could have mono. So the doc wanted to do a blood test to make sure I was okay before I was allowed to go.
I was so not cool with that. It took my mom, my brother and a nurse to hold me down. I was in an extreme state of panic when I saw that big, sharp needle coming my way. It took awhile, but they finally got my blood. I was okay, and had a grand old time and even got thrown in the lake. Which is cool when you're 11 years old.
Not convinced? I give you Exhibit B; when I was 20, there was a German Measles outbreak where I lived, and since there was a good chance that I could be exposed (what's with all this exposing???), it was decided that I needed to be vaccinated. I'm not sure who decided this for me, but Fred (who was my boyfriend at the time) had to be vaccinated too.
Well, we're sitting there, waiting for the public health nurse to do her thing, and as soon as she came at me with the needle, I tried to bolt. Then, I started to cry. Then, I would stop crying and tell her okay. At which point I would shrink away and start crying again. It took 20 minutes for me to calm down enough to get the shot. Did I mention I was 20 years old? All the while, Fred, who I'd only been dating for a few months, was looking at me like, "what did I sign up for?"
One more little anecdote (apparently I love embarrassing myself). I can't quite remember how old I was, but probably about 19 or so, when I had to go in and get a cavity filled. My stupid little pea-sized teen aged brain thought it would be so much better to get the cavity filled without anaesthetic, than to endure a tiny shot. My dentist thought I was certifiable and asked me several times to reconsider. I told him, in no uncertain terms, that if he came at me with any type of needle, I would knee him in the groin. And so he started to drill.
And all I have to say about that is, never again. Never ever in a million years again. There are no words to describe it.
So when I was told that I would be responsible for doing to my daughter one of the things I feared the most in this world, I had a total break-down. I would not even entertain the notion. But then, reality hit, and I knew that my daughter's life was in my hands.
When Elise was born, I promised her that I would do everything in my power to protect her from harm. And giving her a shot three times a day is one of the ways I do it.
And you know what? My daughter is a whole lot braver at 21 months than I ever will be. And I love and admire her for it.
20 hours ago