Wednesday, September 16, 2009


When Maddie had just turned 2 years old, she fell off of a bed and broke her arm.  At the time, the nurses thought it was Nursemaid's Elbow, and tried several times to put it back in place.  Nope.  It was broken, and they were further torturing my child.  Maddie endured an all-nighter in the ER, x-rays, and the putting on of, and removal of (with a saw) a cast, all around the age of 2. 

When she was 4, Maddie was diagnosed with amblyopia, which is when your vision isn't the same in both eyes, so they have to correct the "bad" eye so that your brain doesn't train itself not to use it.  My tiny little 4 year old girl had to endure a rigorous ophthalmology appointment, then get glasses (but fortunately no eye patch.....arghh), which at the time was devastating to me.  Now, not so much.

Anyhoo, Maddie has been put through the ringer as far as doctors and ailments were concerned.  She didn't visit the doctor without lots of screaming and gnashing of teeth until she was almost 4.  Fortunately, she was over that when she endured the whole diabetes thing.  But it never ceases to amaze me how brave she really is after all.

Keep in mind, her fingers are calloused from the repeated sticking to check her blood sugar.  Her backside is spotted from changing her pump site every 3 or 4 days.  She doesn't even wince when I shove a needle inside of a tiny plastic tube into her skin.  She is the bravest person I know.

Now, I've had my fair share of pain.  I've endured being smashed in a car by a Volkswagon Bus, breaking multiple bones and taking out the window with my head and elbow and leaving an 8 inch frankenstein scar down my leg.  I've broken multiple toes, I've had surgeries, and I've birthed 3 babies.  I have a high threshold for pain.  I can handle pretty much anything.

Last year, Maddie and I went to get our eyes checked.  A really good friend of mine is a CPOA at a huge ophthalmology office in town.  Because Maddie has had problems in the past with her eyes, she was a little worried about the appointment.  I knew it would be easier for her to get "checked" by Miss Lisa, than some stranger.  She got all the tests done, got drops in her eyes, and had her eyeballs poked and prodded. I could tell she was nervous, but, nonetheless, she didn't make a peep.   Then it was my turn.

I'll show Maddie how this is no big deal for me.  How she shouldn't be worried about the eye tests, or getting eye drops, or the wretched glaucoma test.  I haven't had many visits to the eye doctor, but how hard can this be?  What's a couple of puffs of air?  No biggie.....

On about the 5th try of trying to get me to keep my face in the contraption to get puffs of air in my eyes, my friend Lisa said, "We'll have to do the eye drops for the glaucoma test.  You keep moving your head before the puff of air shoots out."  I never said I didn't have a problem with anxiety.  I laughed a little, so that Maddie could see that no, it was still no big deal.

As Lisa was putting the drops in my eyes, she proceeded to tell me that they would numb my eyeballs because she was going to "tap" on my pupil with an instrument.  I don't know about you, but the thought of not being able to feel my eyeballs makes me a little woozy, not to mention the whole tapping thing with the instrument.

The next thing I remember was Lisa waking me up, trying to get me to drink a sugary drink.  Not only had I not handled my numb eyeballs, but I had passed out!  I looked over at Maddie and she was giggling.  She wasn't just giggling to herself, she was laughing at me!   

More recently, Maddie's endocrinologist nurse wanted us to try out a new lancet device.  (That's the thing that sticks your finger with a needle).  She claimed that it was supposed to hurt less, and she wanted ME to try it out to see.  I don't know what she was thinking, but whenever a sharp pointy thing goes into my skin at a high rate of speed, only to bring blood, it's going to hurt.

"Just try it, Marcie.  You'll see that it is much less painful than her regular lancet device."  Oh no.  She wants ME to stick my finger.  That's going to hurt!!!  And what makes her think I've tried the lancet device that she uses now??  Then it's going to hurt for 30 minutes and I have to act like it's not big deal.

OK, I had to put on a brave face for Maddie.  After all, she stuck her fingers every day, 6-8 times.  Surely, I'm not that much of a chicken that I can act like it doesn't hurt in front of my kid.

I brought that thing up to my shaking finger, and held my breath, ready to stick myself.  I looked over at Maddie, who was rolling her eyes, and I pressed the button.

"Ouch," I said calmly, but what I was thinking, "OOUUCCHH!!!!!".  As the nurse squeezed my finger to bring up what seemed like a gallon of blood, I was wondering if that had hurt any less than getting kicked in the stomach.  My finger was pulsing and red.  I was sweating, and feeling a little faint.  It only hurts for a second....what a crock--it was throbbing, and did for at least 20 minutes.  I don't remember what happened in the appointment after that, because I was seeing stars, and my finger was reeling in pain.

How can a person so young and so small endure this every day??  I don't know anyone braver than my girl.



  1. Cute post! I can relate to the "air puff" test... but didn't let the Dr. numb my eyes... I am a true wimp when it comes to my eyes!! Maddie is a brave girl and sounds like she is teaching her mom how to be brave :) I am glad that we have re- connected.. I enjoy our talking time on Wednesday's :)