I’d been dreading this day for months.
6 months to be exact.
You see, it was September 2017 when I was hospitalized and receiving IV antibiotics for a lung infection caused by Cystic Fibrosis.
My port-o-cath, a device installed into my chest for immediate blood draw and vein access for antibiotics, was due to be accessed. After a life-time of IV medications, my veins no longer support traditional needles.
Alas, I now get a 3/4 inch long, 19 mm wide one straight into the chest. Usually once a month, for the past 6 years, I’ve had to get it accessed to make sure there is decent blood return and it’s all working properly.
But on that day, I had a new nurse.
Although skilled in other areas, not all nurses get to practice accessing a port with a 3/4 inch needle. So when my new RN came in with all the supplies, mentally, I was skeptical.
She grabbed the needle. Grabbed the rubber implanted into my skin. And went in for the “stab”.
99% of times, there hasn’t been any issues.
This was that 1%.
I bit my lip as mind-numbing pain shot through my chest and radiated throughout my weak body.
My boyfriend, sitting in a chair in the corner, grasped the handles as he winced and clenched his teeth, noticing what had just been done.
The nurse quickly apologized, pulling the needle out as blood ran down my chest.
She called the charge nurse.
Who wanted to try.
This was our only option. I need vein access for medication to fight this infection.
The charge nurse failed in the exact same way the first RN did.
They brought in an ultrasound technician to try and locate a vein the old fashioned way.
But unable to proceed, as my veins were too dehydrated from infection and rolled on the slightest touch.
Now, my port is bruised, my skin is inflamed with soreness. A dull headache has come over me with the pain and realization that I may need to have 2 surgeries (one to remove the damaged port, one to replace it) is reality.
How did it all go so wrong, so quickly?
Eventually, a more experienced nurse was pulled from the oncology unit, thanks to chemo patients- these nurses know how to access ports really well.
Immediate blood draw and a little tylenol to dull the pain.
Today, I went back to make sure it was still working.
Nerves welled up in me last night.
I thought to myself- will I need to have these two surgeries after all?
What if it DOESN’T work?
Am .I strong enough to deal with this stress and pain again?
I’ve had this device for about 6 years and only being 30, how many more years can I go?
Easiest port access in my life happened earlier today.
And it got me thinking about how we run our businesses.
Hear me out…
How many of us lay awake at night, stressing about the things we can’t control?
We ask ourselves:
Are we qualified to run a company? To be an influencer? To chase our dreams?
How much more can we take of vendor management, accounting snafu’s, employee resignations?
How many more years can we go before we are out of capital and want to shut down everything?
Just when we think the answer is misery or that we can’t go on…
Easiest success we’ve had in a long time.
And we realize, all that waiting, all that worrying was wasted.
What if I slept last night like a baby and let the “universe” decide what to do with my port?
What if I focused intentionally on everything I could do instead of what I couldn’t?
What if I enjoyed cuddlng up with my boyfriend instead of stressing him out with my anxiety?
What if we let our actions dictate our company rather than our company dictate our actions?
What if we focus intentionally on what we need to accomplish in the day instead of worrying about what we can’t get done?
What if when we crush the day, we come home and are present to our family?
Getting my monthly port flush isn’t my favorite thing. Freaking out about payroll or if anyone signs up to my blog isn’t really helpful.
And as an entrepreneur, I’m thankful I have cystic fibrosis to remind me of how it’s all the same.
Until next time,
Love and hugs,
Want Even More?
1. I AM ____: The Untold Story of Success is the best-selling book that went viral in 2016 (mostly because of the tips above); it takes real-life stories of successful influencers during their darkest times and puts it against the backstory of dealing with the terminal illness, Cystic Fibrosis.
2. Life. ALL IN. is a free 15 week email course that comes with a guidebook that teaches you how to uncover what you truly want in life, how to build the habits to get it, and how to love others during your journey
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