Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Of Platelets and Glad Tidings

I do NOT have to go in for another blood draw today! Yay!

Did I mention they took a second draw last week while I still had the infusion line in?  Well, they did.  It was the end of a long day and I left before the results came back.   Then Dr L and I played phone tag:  He left a message that he wanted to talk to me about my second blood draw, and that it was not an emergency.  In return, I left him a message giving him permission to leave a more thorough message on my voicemail.  That did not happen.

I called this morning, and he got back to me.  The second platelet count was much improved-- not perfect but closer to the low-normal range where I have been hanging out for sometime.  (Turns out platelets can do a little trick called "clumping"  where they hide out in clusters, which makes the count look lower then it is.)  

Initially, he advocated for going ahead with another blood draw today, just to see where things stand.  I told him that I was not sure if he knew that I tend to be an extremely difficult poke, that my arm was black and blue from last week's attempt, and that while I would certainly do it if he thought it was necessary, I would prefer to save myself and everyone else the trauma if it was not.   He was glad I brought it up and said in that case, we could let it go until my next visit to Celilo, the first week of January.

To my mind, the best news is this:  I am getting better at respectfully standing my ground and asking for what I want from my medical team without working myself into a snit because they do not remember or already know what I know about my body, my situation,  and my preferences.  I am able to be a more competent member of my own team, in a way-- to be more responsible about how I participate and less panic-y and judgmental about how others participate.

I suspect the flip-side of the coin of old-fashioned blind-trust in doctors is this:  the desire that one could or should be able to have such trust.  We invest them with such authority in part because we wish their expertise gave them the ability to give black and white answers to our urgent health questions.  Yeah, that would be nice, but that just ain't the way things really work.  That's not anybody's fault.  That is just how things are.

When we don't like something, we look around for some one to blame.  That's kinda how we humans  are built.  But we don't have to play out that scenario.  And if we look more deeply, we might be able to see that every one of us has to deal with things-as-they-are and not  things-as-we-wish-they-were.

Recognizing that feels kind of grown-up to me.  As we grow up we have to give up some of the magical thinking that someone else has all the answers and can swoop in and save us.  That can be hard to give up on--- especially when we are faced with large, complex, scary issues like life and death.  But the more we can do that-- give up the us-v.-them attitude-- the more we can base our understanding on reality itself-- rather then on the reality we wish we had.

All this talk of reality is making my head spin.  Think I'll take a break and put some lights on the Christmas tree.  Best wishes, everyone.

1 comment:

  1. Sounds like good news to me Thea! Merry Christmas, we won't stick you again this month!