The Luck of the (Blood) Draw

Last Saturday, Brad and I had our bi-annual blood draw and breakfast. An event where he inadvertently fasts with me, drives me to the lab to get blood drawn then takes me to out breakfast, because he’s a good husband.

Instead of going to the lab in our old neighborhood in order to visit our favorite breakfast spot near our old house, we decided to go to the one in Avon so we could run some errands after breakfast.

The lab was quiet and there were only a few of us going in to get stabbed tests that day, so they called me back along with another person and put us in cubes 2 and 3. There was some confusion when the phlebotomists came back because they thought it was cubes 1 and 2. But somehow I got lucky on that particular draw.

I put my arm out and she began looking for veins. Then she noticed my medical id that I almost didn’t put on that morning.

“What’s your bracelet for?” Continue reading

The Routine

Wearing a medical ID has become an interesting topic of conversation in the online community lately. I feel that people with medical conditions should carry some form of information that would help them be cared for in an emergency situation. Chances are if I’m awake, I’m wearing my id.

Someone asked how I remember to wear my medical ID bracelet every day and the answer was easy: It’s routine.

I’m lucky in that I have a nice-looking ID and I can change my tag from bracelet to bracelet to coordinate with my outfits. In order to remember to start wearing my ID, I had to make it into a routine. Just like having an alarm set on my phone to take medication at the same time every day, I put my ID on every day.

Everyone does things a little differently, but for me I wake up, shower, brush my teeth and get ready for work. When I hit that get ready for work part is when the ID goes on.

My watch, wedding ring and ID bracelet never see the inside of the jewelry box. They have a place on the top of the dresser at night, which puts them at eye level in the mornings. It took awhile to get used to wearing the tag every day, but as anyone who has ever worn an engagement or wedding ring will tell you, after a short time you start to feel naked without it on.

I feel like if you think you may need to wear a medical ID, you already know why. I got mine at the recommendation of multiple people who were concerned about emergency situations that I might find myself in while alone. My ID simply has my name, that I have type 1 diabetes and that I’m allergic to penicillin. When this particular tag from Lauren’s Hope gets too marked up or misshapen, I’ll probably change the information to reflect that I have an insulin pump and maybe put Brad’s phone number.

I hope to never need my ID to speak for me, but you never know what will happen. I feel that it also supports me and my needs in some situations, including asking for a pat down instead of going through the scanner at the airport.

I wear my ID tag on the inside of my wrist, the the pretty part of the bracelet visible at all times, but I know that if I were in trouble, it wouldn’t go unnoticed where it is. Emergency response people look for bracelets and necklaces for medical ID information, they may not notice a key chain or other jewelry.

The hardest part of forming a positive habit is getting started, but once you have the routine just gets easier. Even on days when I won’t be setting foot outside of the house, I wear my bracelet because I don’t want to break the routine. I know people who don’t take their ID off for fear of not putting it back on, which is a viable option if you don’t have a jewelry routine like I already do.

How do you start making something part of your routine?