My friend Vanessa wants to hear a story about me spilling some blood.
Something must have happened to her recently because as far as I know - a blood fetish isn't in Vanessa's list of kinks.
Pee, yes. Blood, no.
Sadly, I don't have any truly gory stories. I've never broken a bone. Never had an invasive surgery. I didn't even get my first bloody nose until I was 22.
But I have a blood-ish story. Is that good?
It doesn't matter - that's all I have so that's what you're getting. If it doesn't make you queasy enough - go ahead and scroll down to my St. Patrick's day pictures. That makes me cringe.
Anyway - picture it: Cambridge college. 2005.
An X-Ray, Medical Assistant student is in class one Thursday. Thursday was called "stick day" because that was the day that we all practiced our injections and phlebotomy skills. On each other.
I started this school with an intense fear of needles and left well over my fear and now I LOVE them! I'm constantly eyeing people's veins and imagining how difficult it would be to draw their blood. Is that weird?
No. What's weird is that if I've met you I can pretty much guarantee that I've looked at your veins and imagined the ease or difficulty I would have sticking you. (Pleasant dreams people. I'm out there roaming free!)
ANYWAY - besides drawing blood from others I was a favorite target (especially for beginners) because I have enormous veins.
Towards the end of my schooling I had gotten over my fear and began volunteering to let beginners draw my blood.
It wasn't that bad. I'm such an easy target that no one ever had to dig. The worst that would happen is that they would be really shaky and that was *slightly* unpleasant.
Back to my story.
One Thursday I came to class and it was the first stick day for this new girl. She was very nervous - but everyone is. You can't help but be slightly alarmed at the thought of drawing someone's blood for the first time. (I've heard stories about people practicing on oranges and stuff - all I can say is that the first time I stuck a needle into anything - that "anything" was a sassy former prostitute with a weave named Tish. We became great friends!)
ANYWAY. This girl watched a couple of people draw blood from other students. The color was slowly draining from her face.
I told her to give it a try. I gave her my arm. Helped her tie the rubber hose around my arm, helped her prep the needle, swab my arm and get ready.
She stuck the needle into my arm. My arm has been tied off for longer than normal because we were going slowly - so I had a build up of pressure in my big veins. (Remember this - it's important later!)
I coached her along and told her she was doing a good job and told her to stick a tube into the hub and let blood collect. She barely got it done. Her face blanched and she was sweating like a virgin at a prison rodeo.
I told her to get ready to change tubes and she just looked at me blankly.
I asked her if she was okay.
No response. Just a vacant gaze.
I asked again.
Her only response was to roll her eyes in the back of her head and start to lean to the side.
She fainted in the middle of my blood draw. Falling sideways and off of her chair, twisting the needle 90º in my arm, puncturing through the other end of my vein.
I ripped the needle out and rushed to help her up. A few of the female students around brought her to the bathroom. I finally remembered the tourniquet and popped it off too. A little too late.
I developed the mother of all hematomas. A hematoma is a mass of blood in your tissue. In other words, I was bleeding (very pressurized blood) out of my vein but NOT out of my skin. It collected somewhere in between.
I just remember driving home from school that day and I could barely move my arm. It hurt like a bitch and I had a golf ball sized wad of clotted blood in the crook of my elbow. The next day I had a bruise that was almost solid black and purple at my elbow and followed my vein up and down my arm. Gross, eh?
Was that good enough, Vanessa? ;)