I love getting my blood drawn. The first memory I have of getting my blood drawn, I remember looking at everything that she was doing. I didn’t take my eyes away from her fingers and my veins and the needle piercing my skin. I watched her as she filled the tube up and was sad when it was over. She had told me that she wasn’t used to people watching it as I did, so I told her it just fascinated me.

Fast forward a few years, I remember many mornings in the hospital, being woken up far before the sun came up so they could get all of my blood counts before the doctors came for their rounds. I had a port on my chest, so it was a bit harder to see everything, but I still woke up and tried my best to peak down and see the blood. This time there were more tubes and the smell of the alcohol and blood always made me a bit nauseous.

I think towards the end of all of my hospital stays, I was tired of getting my blood drawn. I was tired of hands touching me every morning and I was tired of the smell. The smell. I still remember the smell.

I’m glad I was never afraid of needles or getting my blood drawn, otherwise I don’t know how I would’ve gotten through chemotherapy as well as all the blood tests I did for years after to check my alpha-feta protein counts. Luckily, when I get my blood drawn today, I am back to my fascinated, interested self. I still stare at everything the phlebotomist does and I am always a bit sad when it was over.