Saturday, January 22, 2005

What a Good-Looking Median Cubital Vein!

I've fallen behind in donating blood a little bit. I should have gone back in November, but I just always forget when I'm eligible and end up waiting longer than I should. This time, I got a call while we were in Louisiana asking me to donate, but was sick when we got back and decided to wait. Inova Blood Donor Services finally tracked me down on Monday and I made and appointment for Friday before lunch. It turned out to be a good day to go: They had some new T-shirts and GIVEBLOOD rubber wristbands. (Not that I donate blood for the tchotchkes ... I donate for the cookies ... but I do sometimes take a T-shirt.)

The phlebotomist was pretty funny. Originally, they were going to use my right arm, because, when they asked if I had a preferred arm for sticking, I mentioned that my vein had rolled a time or two back. I couldn't remember which arm that had happened in, so they wanted to do the right arm. I'm right-handed, and apparently the dominant hand's arm has greater muscularization, which means the vascular structure is a little better anchored or something, and thus the vein would be less likely to roll in that arm. I'd never heard this before, but it makes a certain degree of sense.

However, that plan went out the window when she noticed that I'd scratched up the venipuncture site during the humidifier project. So the focus switched to my left arm.

This is when the phlebotomist noticed my median cubital vein. Apparently it looked like a very good site to use and she said — before, during, and after the venipuncture — that it was a very good-looking vein. She also said that she probably sounded like a weirdo. I thought it was all pretty funny, and she did a good job because I bled fairly easily and filled up the bag in no time.

Other Stuff

HUMIDIFIER: I have no idea if it's working or not. I did set it to the highest-possible point this morning and that seems to have tripped out the thermostat. The fuse didn't blow this time, but when I lowered the humidistat and reconnected power to the furnace it came back on — so no damage, just questions.

There's been some water in the drainage tube, which would imply that water's going into the system, but since it drains into the same sink that our washing machine drains into, I guess there's also a chance that the water I'm seeing could have been drawn into the tube from the rinse cycle or something. I'm just not sure.

The house doesn't seem to be any more humid. In fact, the humidity level has dropped according to the humidity meter I bought, but at the same time the outside temperature has been dropping, so maybe it's related to that.

I don't have the humidistat set to the highest point any more, but I do have it higher than is recommended for the current outdoor temperature. Hopefully we'll see some indication that it's working soon; otherwise I may need to call in professional help...

CELESTE: I forgot to mention that on Thursday, after her nap, when I thought Celeste was starting to get hungry, I got her bottle from the fridge and showed it to her, asking if she wanted to eat. She hasn't picked up the signs we're trying to use with her (the main ones we're working with are EAT and MILK), but her eyebrows shot up and she got an anticipatory look as soon as she saw the bottle.


Anita said...


what sign do you all use for Nurse or Milk? Do you use the Drink sign? I didn't know if there is or should be a different sign for nurse vs. other types of drinking.


T. Carter said...

For MILK we use a motion that looks like you're milking a cow. The hand is held perpendicular to the floor with the fingers out and apart at first but then closed into a fist and then opened again. We repeat a few times.

We don't use a sign for NURSE; instead we're using EAT (fingers together, sort of like an ostrich's beak and tapped to the lips) generically for HUNGRY, EAT, NURSE, etc.

Celeste isn't trying to replicate any of it yet (and she's probably too young to really get what we're trying to teach/show her), but if we can get those signs down that would eliminate at least one point of confusion when we're trying to figure out what's up. I guess the next signs will have to be TIRED or NAP and CHANGE MY DIAPER, DAMMIT!