Saturday, October 23, 2010

The Panic Diaries, Entry 7,543,590 OR Jesus, Make Her Stop Talking About This Already

So I got my DTaP and flu shots yesterday.  Obviously, I did not die.  My arms are a bit sore, and I think I have a fever and I'm a bit tired and achy, but other than that, I'm o.k.

Yesterday? Not so o.k. 

The terror of getting these fucking shots was immense.

I hemmed and I hawed, and I told everyone about my fear, hoping that would lessen it.

It did, sort of.

I joked with my co-workers about my inability to deal with getting shots.  I talked to my friend about how afraid I was.  I tweeted like a crazy person about how I was maybe almost certainly probably maybe not going to get my shots.

And then I went.  Waited in the doctor's office.  The nice, friendly nurse was perfectly pleasant, telling me to pull up my sleeves [OH! I FORGOT!  I wore the Fear Sweater yesterday! I got a lot of compliments on it.  I may or may not have brought another top to have in the car in case I had to change in someone's driveway again.] and the DTaP would go here and the flu shot would go there and she was coming at me with the alcohol swab and I blurted out that I was very, very anxious and panicky.

And she said, "Wow, you don't seem panicked at all." And I guess I don't.  Normally I keep that shit locked down and leave as quickly as possible and break down later.

So I took heart from the nice nurse and let her poke me.

And I was o.k. 

For a few minutes.

Then the anxiety started.  Was my face getting numb?  Was numbness a side effect of one of these shots or maybe both of these shots or these shots in combination with my Aveda hair products?  Was the numbness panic [duh, of course] or was it some sort of horrible reaction where my face and throat would become numb and then I'd suffocate and die because I couldn't breath?

And then I tried to get hold of the husband, who was not answering any phones or texts.  And that triggered PANIC FEST 2010 - The Shottening.

I called my sister and asked her to pick me up.  Again.

I tried to calmly wait, but the adrenaline was pumping and I was having none of it.

So I asked another nurse if she could help me because I was panicking and could she please tell me if facial numbness was panic or an allergic reaction [or, now that I think of it, necrotizing facitiis {I'd include a link, but it's too horrible for words}].

This other nurse was also super nice.  She sat with me and talked to me, even though it was closing time, and walked me down to the lobby and outside to wait with me for my sister.

Who said the funniest thing in the history of ever when I got in the car [after I stopped crying]: "You need to get over this, because we are either going to end up as Grey Gardens or Whatever Happened to Baby Jane."

I don't which would be worse.


  1. i had to watch grey gardens three times to try to comprehend that insanity. do you know how difficult that was for someone with OCD? also, i faint whenever i have to do a blood test. i fainted at the chiro once because i pictured my neck breaking.

  2. I totally understand the panic at the doctor's. Although for me it doesn't even have to involve a needle, I'm just convinced that they're going to come in and say in quiet voice "you've got brain cancer and you have 2 months to live, only a few weeks of which you will be able to control your bowels and be able to speak. Now here's our bill, pay on the way out."
    Congrats on making it through!!

  3. OH. MYGOD. Damn the law, marry me!!! I am THE EXACT SAME WAY about shots and I don't even have OCD. I think it freaks me out that once it's in the bloodstream there's absolutely nothing you can do about it. With a pill, it's just safer or something - because they can give you a shot to reverse said side effects/allergic reactions to pills. And because you're metabolizing said pill, the adverse effects will hit slower, but my logic with the shot or vaccination is that when something is in the bloodstream or being absorbed through a layer of skin it's going to be fatal, quicker.

    I'm such an idiot, I won't even move my arm after a shot, I'll hold it close to my chest like it's in an invisible sling, looking at people all pathetic like the "help I've fallen and I can't get up" lady.

    And I've been through FIVE heart surgeries and I'm still a total basket case, weirdo freak about these things!!!!



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