Shots shots shots shots

I can hardly remember the last time I had strep throat. The only thing that comes to mind is choking on the swab the doctor would jam down my throat to see if I had enough justification for antibiotics. I never liked my pediatrician.

Being sick is a skill that I don’t seem to have. And I’m also a hypochondriac which makes for a lot of panic attacks and hand sanitizer. However, when I’m actually sick, I like to vacation in De Nile, this cute little river in Egypt where I go swimming and sunbathe on the beach.

The battle between my hypochondriac self and my need for a vacation was a rough one, but the hypochondria won out in the end, I guess for the good of my health. So there I was, in the University clinic, waiting to be checked out by a doctor. I went in thinking I’d just get the antibiotics and leave, quick fix, back to work. But it’d been three days and I felt like I’d been hit by a freight train so I didn’t even flinch when the nurse began to talk about the “additional options”.

She talked about the antibiotics and then launched into a big spiel about some pills with a really long name that started with P and then she brought out the big guns. You, she says, you should get a shot to help with the pain. It’s a godsend, it takes 10 seconds, I just stick it right into your hip. You’ll feel better so much sooner. Through the foggy haze of full-body pain my ears pricked up, feel better sooner? Um, yes. I nodded.

The pills that start with P were easy, three little things and some water. Fine. The antibiotics smell like rotten eggs, but I’m a pro at swallowing pills. Fine.

The needle, on the other hand, was huge. Bigger than I’ve ever seen. And pointy. Very pointy. I don’t get shots very often and the last time I got one was maybe 10 years ago and my mom held my hand. Now it’s just me and this nurse who keeps telling me about her son. Apparently he’s very sweet and owns a dog. I was unprepared for the size of the needle, but what surprised me even more was when the nurse asked me to pull my pants down. Excuse me. Hip was the word you used. HIP. I might be groggy, but I’m not that groggy. It’ll take 2 seconds sweetie, 2 seconds and you’ll feel so much better. She’s already ushering me onto my stomach and prepping the needle so I take a deep breathe and think of Mindy Kaling.

Sometimes you just have to put on lip gloss and pretend to be psyched.

Thank god for Mindy Kaling and thank god for chap stick (not the same thing as lip gloss, but close enough). The shot took way too long and it definitely wasn’t on my hip. It was so bad that I couldn’t tell when it was over because the pain was exactly the same. It did, however, make my throat feel less like pointy sandpaper every time I swallowed. But was the subtraction of pain in my throat worth the literal pain in my ass for the rest of the day? That, my fellow bloggers, is a good question.


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