04 July 2006

Blood! Aargh

We had our annual physical exam a couple of weekends ago. It was not something I look forward to every year. Not because I'm hiding an illness. It's the blood-letting part that I dislike. Everytime we go through the blood extraction process every year, I pray that Medical technology has already come up with a way to study whatever they have to study in the blood without having to get a sample. But every year I have to sit still while they get hold of my cold, numb finger and prick it. I've watched too many Star Trek sickbays, I guess.

This year was even worse. They're no longer coming to our office as they have done years before. We have to go to their office to complete the check-up. And guess what. Instead of the usual prick on the finger, they now need a syringe of blood! Arrgh.

So one Friday morning found me at the office of our medical insurance agency, waiting for my time to face the needle. A couple of agonizing hours later, they called me in. I looked at the chair where I'm supposed to sit. Great. It's situated so that they get the blood on your left arm. I wanted it to be at my right arm. But wait... that's not my dominant arm so it might hurt more. So I hesitantly sat and looked away while the nurse tied up my biceps to get a vein.

A short while later I felt a sting. And then it was over. Whew.

"Is something wrong mister? Do you feel dizzy?", the nurse inquired.
"Yeah, you took too much blood, and now it has left my face" I wanted to say that but instead I said, "Sorry, I fear the sight of blood."

The nurse shrugged as she patched the wound with a couple of bandages and then I was free to go.

I carried the bandage for the rest of the day like it was a battle wound. My colleagues wondered why I didn't want to remove it but I simply shrugged and said, "why not?"

Later that night, I finally removed the bandage. Aargh. There was a gruesome black-blue violet thing happening under my skin, like there was an internal hemorrhage going on. The spot lasted for a week and a half. It's gone now, but that sort of thing happens, my colleagues related later on as they stared at my battle wound, that the nurse doesn't know how to extract blood. It figures.

Another annual check-up over. And I'm not looking forward to next year.
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