This morning was my second ultrasound (poke) and first blood draw of the cycle (poke). Tonight is my fourth night of shots (poke).
Poke. Poke. Poke.
Some pokes are easier than others. Then after a couple difficult pokes, I start to get angry about the not-so-bad ones. Add to that the fact that I get acupuncture treatments, and by the end of an IVF I don’t care if I am ever touched by another human being again. It messes with my mind.
I imagine that anyone with health issues, that has to constantly have tests and exams and treatments feels the same way, if not worse. After my morning exams, I went to the dry cleaner and noticed the bruise on my cleaner’s inner elbow with a small familiar dot in the center indicating a blood draw. My mind wandered off to an image of me giving this sweet, little, smiley Asian woman a fist pump and telling her about my morning and asking her about hers.
I chickened out and we talked about the weather.
“Stay dry!” she yelled out to me as I put my head down and walked to my car (more out of a feeling of failure than the rain coming down on me). I have this inclination that if we don’t talk about these difficult things for even a few brief moments, bond over them, we will always feel disconnected from the people around us, ie. alone.
In the car my mind wandered off again to me asking this same woman what happened to her arm and her always bright and cheery face turning to a scowl and saying, “mind your own business!” It was good I didn’t pry, I rationalized.
Sometimes we can poke with our words, too.
This time around I’m trying to concentrate on letting the pokes go. I tell myself that no matter what, I am still safe and still loved. I am trying to concentrate on the fact that I am not a victim of all this nor am I deserving of it.
Sometimes the most brutal pokes can come from ourselves.
But tonight’s poke, from the somewhat burning syringe filled with my old pals Gonal-F and Menopur was one of those not-so-bad ones… mostly because that handsome guy from my photo (sometimes known as Pokey) gave it to me!