Trypanophobia: Beyond just a “fear of shots” #Anxiety #Phobia #Parenting #HSP #Fibromyalgia
I remember being scared of shots. Ironically, I was terrified of needles until the day I had the most painful and terrifying experience with the largest needle I’ve ever seen. Since then, I’ve always thought, “Well, it can’t be worse than that!”, taken a deep breath, and miraculously survived every time. 😅 (This is not letting me create a new paragraph, and it’s very irritating, btw!!). My experience with my 3 kids has been quite a different story. I would say that my youngest, and closest to neurotypical son, Levi (5), has responded most like I did. A rational fear that can be talked through and somewhat relieved, even in the moment. Nervous behavior, but nothing extreme. However, my older two, both of whom are highly sensitive and tend towards high anxiety levels anyway, have always had more severe reactions to uncomfortable and/or painful stimuli. No matter how calm and brave they seem to be leading up to the actual event, the end result is nearly always a mess of flailing arms, kicking legs, begging, crying, and screaming in terror of the tiniest needle, which doesn’t even leave a visible mark. It’s absolutely heart wrenching to have to restrain my tall and strong 7 and 9 year olds, hoist them up onto the table, and allow someone to cause them pain against their will. All I can do is repeat to them over and over how much I love them. I certainly wouldn’t fight that kind of battle if I didn’t love them so much, but I’d much rather they get a tiny prick and a sore arm than be hospitalized or have lifelong complications from a severe illness that could have been mitigated so simply. Fortunately, my children seem to have recovered from the experience more quickly than I have. I don’t know which is more battered and bruised, my heart or my body, but both ache severely. Believing wholeheartedly that I did what was best for them only slightly diminishes the internal agony caused by their very real terror and the feeling of my own betrayal of their trust in me, while everything from my head to my toes hurts from the strain and struggle of fighting my 70lbs and 100lbs children (both also quite tall for their ages), who were well-fueled by adrenaline. I’m left physically and emotionally drained, and absolutely, 100% dreading the necessary repeat in 2 weeks.