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500th Friday Blog Roundup

This is the 500th Roundup.

Sort of.

The 500th Roundup coincides this week with my 8th blogoversary, though we’re still a few weeks out from the 8th anniversary of the Roundup.  I started it a few weeks after I started my blog.  Part of me didn’t want to write the Roundup for a few weeks so the 500th Roundup could fall on the Roundup’s 8th anniversary.  But that seemed like a waste of Fridays.

The 500th Roundup is actually the 400th Roundup since the numbering got botched along the way, but still… 400 times?  400 times I’ve sat down to write this post.  400 times I’ve highlighted a few posts I’ve read that week.  I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve missed writing the Roundup.  That’s a damn good run.

So happy milestone, little Roundup.

And thank you, everyone, for reading the Roundup.  For some of you, about 400 times.


I had to get blood drawn this week, so I decided to take the twins with me so they could see that blood draws aren’t scary.  And by “not scary,” I meant that I planned to lie to them and tell them that needles don’t bother me.  Sorry, kids, if you’re reading this.

So after pattering on for the entire car ride about how this is only going to take 45 seconds and the fact that I can’t drink coffee until after it’s over is more painful than the blood draw itself, we get into the lab and I get a phlebotomist who is not interested in having this blood draw be a positive experience for the kids to witness.  I tell her which vein is the easiest to use, but she opts for another one.  I ask her for the butterfly needle, and she pulls out the more intimidating-looking standard one.  So the kids are getting a little squicked out.  (Thank you, Knottedfingers, for the best word!)

And then she can’t get the blood out.

She’s wiggling the needle, trying to coax out blood, and I am grinning wildly at the twins, saying, “see, doesn’t hurt a bit.”  And then I start to feel clammy, as if I am going to pass out.  And the Wolvog nervous points out that this is taking a lot longer than 45 seconds.  He’s been counting for a bit, and really, we’re getting closer to two minutes and there still isn’t any blood.

And then, right as I am about to set my forehead on the table and confess that I am a huge liar, the blood starts flowing.  The clammy feeling passes and the phlebotomist finishes up.  We leave and walk through the parking lot toward the cup of coffee I stored in the car.

Here is the reality: I’ve convinced myself that needles hurt a lot more than things like a trip to the dentist or a Pap smear or a dozen other appointments where I don’t get worked up beforehand.  But that sharp instrument the dentist uses to poke the gums?  That actually hurts more than a needle.  And a speculum is uncomfortable and in for a lot longer than a needle.  I’m not being a total liar when I tell the kids that it won’t hurt at all when they get blood drawn this fall for the first time.


Sometimes I can’t believe that I used to get blood drawn in the morning and give myself an injection in the evening.  That I dealt with needles all the time.  Maybe I’m just out of practice.


Time for your weekly nag:

This is just your friendly nudge to do your weekly backup.  I know, I know, who has the time to create backups on a weekly basis?  No one.  But you still need to do it and forgo ten minutes of something else, once a week.  Right now, before you do anything else, use this post to roll through a quick backup of your email, documents, images, blog, social media accounts, and mobile devices.  Reading the Roundup on the go and don’t have the ability to do your backup right now?  Email yourself a copy of the Roundup so that the email will serve as a visual reminder to get this task done.  Ten minutes of your time once a week may save you a major loss of time and data down the road.  Don’t have regrets.  So, on your marks, get set, back up!

As always, add any new thoughts to the Friday Backup post and peruse new comments in order to find out about methods, plug-ins, and devices that help you quickly back up your data and accounts.


And now the blogs…

But first, second helpings of the posts that appeared in the open comment thread last week.  In order to read the description before clicking over, please return to the open thread:

  • None.  No one found a post last week that moved them or made them think or cracked them up? (Yes, this is a guilt trip, but it is a milestone Roundup.)

Okay, now my choices this week.

If You Don’t Stand for Something has a moving post marking the 5th year of trying to build her family.  She writes, “5 years.  It should get easier. Or more tolerable. Or you hope that you just become desensitized to it all.  Anything to help cope with it.  But instead, after five years, I still come home crying and breaking down.”  It’s a raw post that lays bare the reality of infertility.

A+ Effort muses about how far they are from adding a second child to their family, reflecting on how her own relationship to her sister informed the dream she had for her family’s formation.  There’s a lot that resonated with me from the post, and again, it should be one of those required reading posts for anyone who doles out the solution of “why don’t you just adopt!” as the answer to infertility.  I love the mindfulness with which she moves forward in building her family, and while she may think she needs to buck up, I think she has a legitimate reason to vent.

A Little Bit More wonders how others perceive her childlessness and tries to see herself through their eyes, especially after a woman jokes around with her about how terrible children can be.  She explains, “She was talking like she wanted me to commiserate with her, but I just kept trying to change the subject. When I left, all I could think about was is that what she thinks of me?”  But moreover, she opens up a conversation with her post on how not having kids doesn’t equal not wanting kids.  Or hating kids.

Lastly, My Lady of the Lantern has an aching post about the child she is carrying and the child she lost, and how death keeps people eternally one age as the rest of us change.  It is a post filled with wishes.

The roundup to the Roundup: It’s a milestone Roundup — 500 (er… 400).  I don’t really love needles.  Your weekly backup nudge.  And lots of great posts to read.  So what did you find this week?  Please use a permalink to the blog post (written between June 20th and June 27th) and not the blog’s main url. Not understanding why I’m asking you what you found this week?  Read the original open thread post here.


1 Buttermilk { 06.27.14 at 9:32 am }

This is a new blog I found this week, and this is a guest post from the husband talking about their journey leading to surrogacy. It’s also about the task of writing. http://jasonandkerri.blogspot.com/2014/06/guest-post-jasons-take.html
Happy 500/400, Mel! Whatever the actual number, what you have put together (and who you bring together) on this blog amazes me daily.

2 knottedfingers { 06.27.14 at 10:11 am }

I’ll never be a grand writer like some of the ladies out there. I’m too blunt and cuss too much lol but I made a post about coming out of the broom closet. It’s a hard thing to do on a blog. But I did it and I’m proud


3 a { 06.27.14 at 11:03 am }

Thanks for keeping me caught up so many, many times – especially this week when I’been away from the computer.

4 andy { 06.27.14 at 11:33 am }

Happy Milestone! That’s a great one to reach.

5 Mae { 06.27.14 at 11:42 am }

Hi Mel,
I kept thinking I should post what I had written last week for your second helpings. Sorry I didn’t go with my gut! I really appreciate the weekly round up – it’s one of my favorite things, and I hope to contribute in the future.

Happy 8-Year Blogoversary!

Here’s a post from my new blog that I think may be roundup appropriate:


6 MissingNoah { 06.27.14 at 11:52 am }

This post about feeling alienated in the loss community for being a non-Christian really struck a chord for me. http://theemptycookie.blogspot.com/2014/06/coming-out-of-broom-closet.html?m=1

7 Aerotropolitan Comitissa { 06.27.14 at 12:42 pm }

Happy milestone! Quite an achievement 🙂 .

Squicked is an awesome word.

Needles bother me disproportionately, too.

I went ahead and told P that I hate needles for reasons which are completely illogical and made him try and convince me that I was being silly. I’ll let you know if that reverse psychology ever works out. In the meantime, the nurse took the more sensible “use local anaesthetic spray and give everyone lollipops” approach which is, I guess, why she has her job and I… don’t have her job.

8 It Is What It Is { 06.27.14 at 1:35 pm }

Thank you for pirating squicked and adding it to my lexicon.

9 Geochick { 06.27.14 at 4:16 pm }

I feel guilty every time I clear out Feedly (dammit, still miss the Google Reader) because I’m so far behind on reading that I can’t even face it. It’s happening a lot lately, so thanks for this RoundUp. (the only one I haven’t just cleared in past several weeks…ugh).

I have had so much blood drawn that I’ve gotten this crack before “Wow, looks like you have track marks”. I hate it, even with a good phlebotomist and I’m not even that queasy. Don’t know what it is about needles…

10 Betty m { 06.27.14 at 4:36 pm }

Great milestone!

11 fifi { 06.27.14 at 4:45 pm }

My husband and I had a joke about how fertility clinics were actually fronts for vampires, and that was the reason for the constant blood withdrawals.

12 Lori Lavender Luz { 06.27.14 at 5:25 pm }

Happy milestone, Roundup! I believe I’ve read most of your entries (except for the earliest few).

I got lightheaded at the blood-drawing section of this post. Thanks.

13 Cristy { 06.27.14 at 6:37 pm }

Happy milestone, Mel!!! Wishing you so many more.

That blood draw sound awful! One thing to be stuck, but wow.

Here’s one to add, especially for Lori’s sage advice in the comments. http://constantinthedarkness.blogspot.com/2014/06/how-to-respond.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+ConstantInTheDarkness+%28Constant+in+the+Darkness%29

14 Northern Star { 06.27.14 at 6:50 pm }

K, totally posted in the wrong spot. Sheesh.

Oh little roundup, I love you! Thank you Mel for everything you do for this community!

My choice for the week:

Cristy’s post celebrating 10 years with Grey – I loved it! http://searchingforoursilverlining.blogspot.com/2014/06/decade.html

15 Northern Star { 06.27.14 at 7:02 pm }

I would also like to add this one:

http://searchingforoursilverlining.blogspot.com/2014/06/body-image.html – also by Cristy

And I love this story about the needle! Hilarious Mel!

16 Northern Star { 06.27.14 at 7:43 pm }
17 Persnickety { 06.28.14 at 1:31 am }

Oh, when I was 18 and in the UK, I had a blood draw where the nurse missed the vein and I had a massive blood bruise for my high school graduation. I get my own back now though- blood clot in the otherwise perfect spot. Even with warnings it squicks out most needle wielders

18 Mali { 06.28.14 at 2:17 am }

Congratulations on the 400/500! That’s no mean feat. And shows real commitment to the community from day one. Thank you!

Needles don’t usually bother me, and I can quite happily watch them put it in. (And self-injecting for IVF made me feel quite empowered!) But last month’s blood transfusions and hospitalisation and daily blood tests and multiple cannulas meant that they were running out of veins to get blood/stick in tubes etc. In the end, I was greeting them with “good luck today!” None of it though was as bad as a junior doctor putting in a cannula about 11 years ago – and missing the vein entirely. That one hurt.

19 St. Elsewhere { 06.30.14 at 4:44 am }

Thanks for the mention, Mel.

And, here’s to a 500 more! How cool would that be?

20 Mrs T (missohkay) { 06.30.14 at 12:39 pm }

Thanks for linking to me! I was really moved by this post this week: http://mycheapversionoftherapy.com/2014/06/20/forever-young-the-27-club/

21 loribeth { 06.30.14 at 2:32 pm }

400, 500, tomato, tomahto. 😉 It’s still a whole lot of reading blogs, writing and posting, and a lot of great reading for us. Thank you for the Roundup — it’s such a great way to start off my Friday & coast into the weekend. 😉

I don’t LIKE getting my blood drawn but it doesn’ t bother me too much. I make a point of looking the other way when the needle is going in. I do have deep veins, though, and they sometimes have trouble tapping them (although the left arm is better than the right). There was a time during my pregnancy that I had to go to my hospital’s lab for a blood draw. The nurse tried one arm & then the other & then back to the first arm again. OW.

I had a girlfriend in university who fainted every single time they tried to draw blood from her. Every dr she went to assured her that this time it would be different, that HE (usually a “he”) was an expert & she wouldn’t feel a thing, and every time, she’d be out like a light.

I have never fainted, but I tried giving blood a couple of times 25-30 years ago. Every time I tried standing up from the cot, I’d see stars & get woozy. I’d inevitably wind up laying there for an hour or more while others came & left. They finally told me quite nicely that perhaps I shouldn’t come back… which, considering the need for blood, is saying something…!

22 Melissa N. { 07.02.14 at 8:41 am }

This post in particular really tugged at my heart strings. So beautiful, so very tender and raw in its honesty and openness. I kept thinking about it for hours after reading it.

23 Battynurse { 07.03.14 at 11:37 am }

I admire your efforts to make blood draws seem less scary to your kids. Years ago I had a woman who came in for lab work every few months. She always had a little girl with her around 3 years old. She’d sit there the whole time talking to the little girl about how scary it was and how much it hurt and how much she hated it. All I could think is I hope I never have to draw that child’s blood.

24 Justine { 07.06.14 at 8:08 am }

Happy Major Milestone, Roundup! This is a labor of great love.

And I hate getting blood drawn. The problem is that they can never find the right vein, and never get the blood out. I think that’s the fear: when you’re doing it yourself, you have some control over it. When someone else is doing it, you never know … 😛

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