Punk Rock Coping Mechanisms

I continue to abhor getting blood drawn. The first big prenatal bloodletting sent me into a full-fledged panic attack, in part because the woman with the needle was unwittingly doing everything in her power to make it worse. After that first go round, I decided that the next time around I would pretend I was getting some dramatic new body piercing, because after all, it's not the needle so much as the veins that give me the frantic heebie jeebies. (This is important to explain to nurses who give me the evil eye when they see the nose piercing on my panic-stricken face.) Amazingly, this new technique seems to be working. I've been subject to the needle twice since, and got through without so much as hyperventilating.

So yesterday I had a rather unpleasant dental appointment. I sort of maybe hadn't gotten to the dentist since we moved to the South Bay (oops). Accordingly, I was treated to an expensive and at times excruciating deep cleaning to snap my teeth back into top form. Normally, this is done after a couple shots of Novacain, but considering my condition the dentist decided against drugs. About two teeth in it dawned on me that the high-pitched buzzing of the metal tools wasn't all that different than what I've seen on LA Ink. (Have you seen it? Oh my goodness. The tattoos those people do are breathtaking. Extraordinary.)

My alter ego is anxiety-free, has a high tolerance for pain, and is covered in exotic piercings and tattoos.

Unfortunately, I haven't yet figured out a body modification experience analogous to childbirth.

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