I eventually got over the insulin shots being stressful (it has been a few years) and the finger sticks have never bothered me. But, the intrusions for blood draws, for vaccinations, and other assorted pokes, still needle me. There is a 'rule' that you can't be poked more than 3 times before they send you home to come back another day. I have had this happen once. I've been stabbed in nerves (that hurt for months!), I get bruises, and often almost pass out. I even had one lovely nurse stab herself after removing the needle from my arm. This fiasco meant I needed tested for AIDS. (did you know Diabetes IS an autioimmune disease???)
I drink water (with electrolytes in it--a hint I discovered when I had an easier experience than expected and couldn't figure out why!), I don't drink any caffeine for days before, I dress warmly (even if it is 80 degrees out), and I even bounce around in the office while waiting my turn (to make sure the blood is flowing).
I am fine while I am being prepped, I laugh and chat and while the poke startles me every time, it is all good. Usually. It almost always takes a bit for the blood to start moving into the vial. Butterflies are used on me and the life force has been taken from my wrist, my hand, and rarely my inner arm. It is when the needle is removed that I suddenly find myself heading down a dark tunnel. Like Alice in Wonderland, I'm falling and fading and lost somewhere I don't remember going to. The world starts to echo and grow fuzzy. It makes no sense at all. It is not because most of the draws are fasting, I have had this happen in the middle of the day and when I got my last flu shot. It is confusing and frustrating. And it is a little bit amusing. Afterwards.
I have a draw coming up. I'll go in on Thursday and if it doesn't take, I'll have a bit to recover til I go back for a second try. I'm not looking forward to it. I never am! Being a turnip is not fun when it comes to a blood draw. (the link on the word 'turnip' was shared on FB a while back, it is fun to see where words and phrases come from!) I'm always amused by how many people are afraid of needles. I am not really afraid of them or the pokes. I don't know what it is that lays me out flat when the constricting tubing is loosened from whatever body part it happens to be surrounding. However, it would be fun to find out.