There are now two weeks worth of needles in my yellow bucket. And a corresponding number of holes in my skin.
Despite my initial reservations, actually injecting myself hasn’t been as bad as I thought it would be. I have got into the routine of removing the syringe from the fridge, allowing it to warm to room temperature, loading it into the bingo dabber and pressing the trigger over the appropriate piece of skin before discarding the syringe safely in the yellow bucket.
As part of my jab-kit I also got a diary which I complete daily in order to keep a track of where and when I have injected.
For the first four days I added comments about how the injection had gone. For the first four days I wrote the same two comments:
By day five I had stopped writing these comments. Not because it had stopped hurting or that I had stopped crying, but because it was getting rather repetitive and my pen-ink could be better used elsewhere.
By day seven I looked like shit. I know I looked like shit as people told me I looked ‘tired’ which is a polite way of saying that you look like shit. My eyes were puffy; partly through tiredness and partly through the ocean of tears that I had cried. Every night I dreaded the time that I had to get the syringe out of the fridge and dreaded the time that I had to inject because I knew that it would hurt like hell. And that I would have to sit on the sofa with a cold-gel-pack on the spot, waiting for the pain to pass before I could go to bed. And that once in bed I would have to avoid lying on the spot because of the soreness.
The pain isn’t even the needle. It only starts to hurt 30 seconds after I have removed the needle. Its like a burning, throbbing pain which seems to spread around the area. And I don’t think I am even being ‘mardy’ about it. I had a tattoo without anything more than discomfort and I barely flinch during my monthly brazillian …
By days 8 and 9 I decided that I needed to pull myself together… and so I coloured my hair and gave myself a manicure, pedicure and a facial.
I then decided that I needed to change the way in which I was doing the injections if I was to ever have an evening which didn’t revolve around the anticipation of doing it, doing it, dealing with the after-effects of doing it and feeling sorry for myself for having to do it.
I decided to change the time of my injection to the morning.
By far the best aspect of this change was that in order to avoid having an injection in the evening and then the following morning, I had to skip my last evening injection. This was like having an unexpected day off, like when you got sent home from school because the boiler had broken, and was the cause of much giddiness and celebration.
And so now I take the syringe out of the fridge when I get up in the morning and inject just before I leave to go to work. It still hurts like hell but the need to get out of the flat and get to work seems to take over from the pain, although I do stick my cooling-gel-packs down my skirt to help take the sting out of things.
Hopefully I now look less like shit.
Injecting everyday brings a whole new set of things to consider and think about. Thighs are definitely the least painful and so I look forward to ‘thigh days’ where as the sensitive tummy area is the worst and is accompanied by much dread.
I try not to look ahead and work out what day it will be next, instead preferring to play ‘dabber-roulette’ – will it be a thigh, tummy or hip day?! Who knows!
Upper arms are a different story. For a start not only am I right handed but I am pretty hopeless with my left and so haven’t had the confidence to even attempt to inject into my right arm with my left hand for fear of missing and hitting one of the cats instead.
Even injecting my left arm with my right hand hasn’t been very successful on either of the occasions I have tried, ending up with bruises I think due to hitting the muscle.
The instructional literature provided with the jab kit suggests that one could save injecting those harder to reach areas for when one has company …
so watch out when visiting me … for I may produce the bingo dabber and it won’t involve two fat ladies of two little ducks!