Sunday, February 22, 2009


My eyes are on the verge of burning they are so tired. Go figure, today was math day. I can't understand the inherent fixation some teachers have with making things seem more complicated than they already are.. and some are quick to lay the blame on the gender factor in this equation but that is so not it. I mean seriously, those who say that females never teach math properly are dead wrong. Like the math professoress (not sure if that's a word but I really dont care at the moment) I had last semester was a hardnose but she was good at what she taught, left us feeling pretty secure - and yes I know that would leave some wondering why the hell was I failing it that time if she left us feeling so secure. It was my own personal fault though, nothing to do with the teacher or how she taught.

All week, or maybe more like all month, I’ve been in a pretty crappy mood. I mean for all intents and purposes I shouldn’t be.. Today wasn’t much different – or rather I should say, started the same as almost every other except it didn’t quite end as I thought it would.

S is studying some medical related major and this semester the course requires them to learn how to draw blood from patients and test it and stuff. She’s been really psyched about it for ages and I volunteered to be her first lab rat. When I was a kid, the mere thought of getting an injection at the doc’s set me off. I hated going to the doctor with a passion simply for that reason. And when it did happen, they usually had to call in the nurses to hold me down - such was my dislike for injections. I even carried on for finger sticks. I just didn’t like the thought of a sharp object piercing my skin. And yet, if someone had told me back then that I was going to voluntarily let a friend draw blood I would have said they were totally BSing.

So S asked me the night before to wear an abaya that she could access my arm easily. I obliged, though it still hadn’t set in that she was actually going to be drawing blood. All month she had been saying she was going to but like every time, something would come up. This morning I wore a ‘blood drawing friendly abaya’ and went on to uni. I don’t have class till 11 so S came and hung out for a bit while I worked some math probs. At quarter to 9 she said we’d go to the lab – and we did. The moment we set foot into the Health Science building I felt those familiar dead/dying butterflies weighing heavily in the pit of my stomach. We get into the room and its all ‘medically feeling’, then S decides to show me the dummy arm (I think she said the med students named it Sam..) they use for practice. I’ll add a pic of it to this post. I saw that and was seriously freaked. That’s when it finally set in that I was to be her FIRST… UNO... AWAL. “Dear God,” I thought. “It would be so classless and uncool if I backed out on her now.” I touched Sam’s arm (his skin had a pretty rubbery feel to it and kinda on the tough side.), and the weirdest thought came to mind. I had already decided that I’d let S do my left arm in case anything went wrong and I ended up paralyzed for life – I’d forgive her of course, but it was just in case. The thought that was on my mind was if any coach would allow me to play tennis even if I couldn’t actually toss the ball to serve and if there were any tournaments would I be allowed to play. I mean I’d have no problem receiving the whole game with no service of my own.

Ok, so by now S has gotten a key to the medical cabinet containing all the needles, tubes, gloves and all that other stuff. I watch as she gets a white tray and begins neatly piling her blood sucking paraphernalia on it. I’m hella nervous and start talking, I mean really talking cuz that’s what I do when I’m nervous. While S was preparing, a classmate of her’s comes in with another eager volunteer in tow. So S and classmate begin preparing together (they were both extra extra cheery – almost humanly impossible cheery for so early in the morning). So us lab rats waited it out, I knew I was nervous but I wasn’t quite sure about the other girl.

Finally S asks the classmate to go call the teacher (since this operation has to be supervised). The teacher arrives and has a few words with them about their preparation. She tells them they need to put more things onto their trays. Like instead of one tube, needle, syringe thingie, band-aid, and cotton, they needed like 3 of each (In case anything was to go wrong for any reason.. my heart skipped a beat, not the type of thing I wanted to be hearing after seeing Sam’s arm..)

Anyways, classmate and her first victim decided to start things off. I couldn’t really see what went on over there but after a few moments classmate was apologizing profusely to the volunteer. I prayed S had steady hands and held my breath knowing I was next. S came over, tied a tourniquet thingie to my upper arm and admired the visibility of my arm veins. The predator and its prey came to mind. Then the teacher came over, had a look and gave S some last minute pointers while S rubbed the spot with an alcohol swab. S then picked up the needle and syringe and began fixing the needle on it. Somehow during that process the cover on the needle popped off and there was this HUGE ass needle point staring me in the face. It was bloody HUGE and I might have thought I was exaggerating but I could actually see, very clearly, the hole in the tip of the needle where my blood would be sucked through. Right then I decided I couldn’t look. I turned my head, shut my eyes really tight and clenched my teeth. I told S to just tell me when it was all over.

Just when I thought she would dive in, she paused, and wiped the spot again with a swab and dabbed it dry. Then there was a sharp prick, hurt for like a nano-second. It was in and for no logical reason I decided to look. – for a split second. I watched that deep colored vein blood go into the syringe thingie. I’m not really a fan of blood so I had to turn away again. She finished, took the needle out gently and the teacher pressed a fresh cotton on.

Relief, it hadn’t hurt as much as I thought it would and thank the Lord I didn’t end up like poor Sam.

That over and done I left the med lab to the comfort of the lounge in the business building. There were clusters of students scattered about socializing, but I didn’t really know any of them despite sharing the same building. So I decided to use my iPod to kill off the remaining time till class. I was playing a pretty intense round of Vortex and listening to my favorite AlSafi tracks when I felt a hovering presence. Some one was trying to get my attention –which surprised me but it turned out to be my math classmate M.

She’s a really sweet person, though I haven’t known her that long. She only just started speaking and hanging out with me like week before last, despite the fact that we’ve been classmates for nearly 6 weeks now. But hey, I guess that’s something since I can’t really say I know any of my previous math classmates or even my current ones save M and her friend.

Anyways, we were chatting online last week and she asked me why don’t I socialize at uni more. She said, we only live once and life is boring if we don’t have someone to love in it or enjoy things with. We have to live, love and laugh. I’d say she was having a philosophical moment but that is the way she is. She’s just one of those people that make you laugh with her even when you’re feeling extremely crappy.

So we talked for a while before class and she helped me understand the concept of tax in demand and supply functions. After class we parted ways and I went to AUS. I was supposed to meet another S there and go home. (LOL funny thing is I met a totally different S there than either of the first mentioned Ss. This could get confusing. First S will have to be SR. Other S will be SK and the S I bumped into unintentionally will be SS) ok so SS and I chatted for a bit while I waited for what truly seemed like forever for SK. By the time SK finally showed up I was feeling really drained and just wanted to go home so I could dive into bed.

That didn’t exactly work out as planned. I got home and laid down, but just couldn’t sleep. So I decided maybe I’d work a few math problems. Math book was in my bag with my laptop and when I went to get it I ended up getting out my laptop, setting it up and using the net. I never made it to the math book. SK wanted me to come over to her house, which isn’t that far from mine, but I told her I couldn’t even move off the bed much less think about putting on outside clothes and going out.

I laid there for a few hours and then a little after 5, Z msged me and asked if I wanted to join her and some of our teammates to play tennis at 7:30. The thought was daunting in itself. Not only would I have to get up, but change into tennis attire AND somehow get to the club. That didn’t take much thought, I replied and politely declined the well meaning offer.

I continued laying in bed till M’s words randomly came to mind. “Live.” By definition I believe she means go out and have fun / make life worth living. “What have I become?” I’m the one always scoffing at those who can’t handle a bit of work in the mornings/afternoon while still maintaining a healthy amount of activity in the evening and yet here I was just like one of them – dying from the little bit of morning uni. Long story a bit shorter, I managed to extract myself from moping about in bed and got to the club by 7:15. It was fun. Hell it was a heck of a lot of fun. I ended up laughing so much my sides hurt.

Wow, I started this post days ago and then got so busy with uni I never got around to publishing. I suppose I hadn't finished with it, but I dont remember what else I had planned to write and I certainly don't feel like even being bothered atm.


Roon said...

blink blink...

so many things to emphasis on..
First, OMG you did not just be a rat lab.. like seriously [sounding blondie for the moment] What on earth? If i were you [thank god i wasn't] I would've seriuosly blacked out..
Big needle, slow motion, friend in training,and supervising Dr are all the ingredients of a recipe of a disaster..

Right, another...
Solve math? are you kidding me [dull face] even though I do enjoy math and used to, I emphasis used to YOU DO NOT SOLVE MATH FOR FUN!
though I loved the fact that you went to the club and enjoyed your time [proud]

and one more thing, the letters thing, you're soo right, dam confusing.. pweeez next time u can make up names [blink happily] cause I didn't know which S to hate.. you know there always should be she who shall be hated...

El Hazard said...

A promise is a promise and I try to keep any I make.

LOL, its not just any math. I'm not a fan of the numbers, but I do like Simultaneous Equations and I like that other thing where u have to move the numbers around on either side of the equation to simplify and get the answer. Its fun - and one of the few concepts I actually kinda understand ;)

I'll try and minimize my use of letters all together, cuz i can so see this getting to a point where it even confuses me..

Roon said...

its called "simplifying"
I like finding the value of things, X Y Z.. letter again..

=) they say who ever listens to Mozart is good at math. I was really disappointed when I heard his symphonies I didn't like them one bet :( guess im not that good at math :S

Take care sis..

cant wait for your next post =D


Dragon said...

A few things:

1. How the living hell could you let a first timer at your arm and then DON'T LOOK!?!?!?!?!

2. What in God's name are dead/dying butterflies??

3. YOU HAVE AN IPOD!!!!????

4. I'm right proud of you for pushing through your funk and getting out there and doing something. I'm finding it impossible, but I'll take a page from your book and try.

5. If this chic had screwed you up and you'd lost the use of your arm, I'd have been on the warpath on your behalf. Big time. And you kow it wouldn't have been pretty.

El Hazard said...

Hmm, well see that was just it - I couldnt look cuz that needle was like hideously horrifying and I was hoping her hand wouldnt start shaking and I end up with a gash like poor Sammy!

Dead/dying butterflies would be that horrible feeling one gets in their stomach when they are nervous. You know how ppl always say they have butterflies in their stomach? Well that's a pretty inaccurate description cuz butterflies are all light and weightless if they are fluttering around, but I presume that a heaping pile of dead ones would weight about as much as that weight in one's stomach feels at the nerve wracking time.

Yeah, I've had an iPod for a while now. Since last year.

Good friends who help u forget about ur probs help.

LOL like I would have told u who she was if I was in a holy forgiving mood and u was on the warpath. 'Make Love not Warcraft' hehehe...

Dragon said...

I've got ways of finding these things out. No one is safe from my wrath, you should know that by now.