When was the first time you did it?
OK, class, minds out of the gutter (!) Insulin injections are a tricky topic for me. I didn't start off doing my own shots. Like everyone else I learned how to do them in the hospital--several unsuspecting oranges later, I successfully injected myself with saline a few times. I was nervous when the first "real" needle plunged into my body, perhaps more than anyone realized. But I played the role of compliant patient perfectly. At twelve, my doctor considered me mature enough to handle my diabetes on my own.
When I finally went home, though, all that changed. I didn't protest when my mom took over the first few days--"just to make sure you're all right", she said. She had worked in a hospital for nine years and was comfortable with needles. Those days stretched into weeks, then months. We silently fell into an arrangement: Mom would draw up my dose, carefully rolling the Lente bottle, mixing it and the Regular into a cloudy column inside the syringe. I would "try" to do the shot myself, and when I finally gave up after two or three half-hearted pricks, Mom would take over. We then dutifully marked off the site on my rotation sheet and forgot about the charade until the time for my next injection came around. This continued for about three years.
One summer day, I decided I'd do it on my own. For good. Mom didn't say anything, but she seemed relieved. Most of the time she still did the rolling and the mixing, but from that day on she never had to "help" me with the actual injections. I look back now and think of the pain she must have endured, sticking needles into her little girl. I never cried or complained, but it must have bothered her. I never meant to cause my mom any heartache. It was something unspoken, unintended. I thought she preferred it that way, and I liked having her take care of me. She used the backs of my arms a lot, or a leg in the warm months. For me, it was far easier to do abdomen sites, which I use 95% of the time to this day.
So, when did you take charge of your own care, fellow OC'ers? Did your parents "help" like mine?