A Blood Draw Forgiveness

I had my blood drawn today.

I walked into my usual draw station and was met by a new face. My usual guy wasn’t there. A seemingly pleasant lady was checking someone else in and so I patiently waited my turn. When my turn came, she checked and double-checked my name and I was impressed that she found a typo. She was almost apologetic, calling herself “anal.” I complimented her, saying that she was thorough.

After she found my vein and made an easy time of collecting the tubes of blood, I asked her if we could double check the tests ordered. Some of them were time sensitive and I guess I just wanted to make sure.

We looked at the computer screen together and realized there was a whole other set of bloodwork- the most important time sensitive tests- that she had missed. She was mortified. I was just relieved that I followed my instinct and double-checked. I sat down for her to poke me again and my veins were less than forthcoming this time. She had to stick me twice, on top of the earlier draw.

I could see the embarrassment and frustration she felt at having missed the other tests and then having missed the vein, all after having a conversation with me about thoroughness. I felt bad for her. Things happen. Mistakes are made. This one was caught and so no harm done. I know some people would be annoyed that they got stuck a few extra times and were there for an extra thirty minutes. I was just satisfied that everything that was supposed to be done, got done. I like to think that in the “before” (the “before my baby died”) I would have been more annoyed and it is only in the “after” that I have developed a sense of what really matters. I’m not sure if that’s totally true. I think I would have been forgiving in the “before.” But now in the “after,” I really appreciate why I am forgiving. My baby died. Getting poked a few extra times is nothing in comparison to that. I wanted to tell her that. In the short time I was with this woman, I felt like I could tell that she would be the type to be kicking herself over and over again through the day for what happened. I’m usually that kind of person myself. I wanted to tell her, “Really, it’s no big deal. Everything got done. I’m not disappointed- I know what real disappointment is and this is chump change!”


8 thoughts on “A Blood Draw Forgiveness

  1. VERY profound thoughts. In having your life turned inside out you’re remembering one of the hard lessons: the innate knowing of what really matters. Almost everything pales next to the trauma of losing your child.

  2. When one experiences life intensely, perhaps with more love or gratitude, because of a life changing event, it seems natural to share.

    My compassion and patience have increased dramatically since my hub’s accident. In medical situations, much like your blood draw or other big ones, I often ask, “do you have a moment? Do you mind if I tell you a story?”

    I enjoy sharing it, and it helps the other person to understand why I am/we are so laid back and aware.

    My experience has been very positive in sharing. When we lost a twin, I responded in stride. The receptionist was kind, so I told her our story.

    I didn’t anticipate her response. She got it. Her son was in a massive accident, recovered, and then recently passed away from brain cancer.

    Perhaps we need to share when our hearts feel it’s best..


    • i like that transition- “do you have a moment? Do you mind if I tell you a story.” It’s often hard to bring her up out of no where, but this is a nice way to do it 🙂

    • yes, few day to day things that upset me (though every now and then there’s something tiny that upsets me big time- all part of the avalanche of grief, I suppose)

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