Nov. 19—I hate getting sick, and for me getting sick is always rough because growing up an athlete, I just want to push through it, but that does not work all the time.
When I was younger and would get sick, it wasn't always horrible because I had my mom there to take care of me, but as a "grown up," you're on your own most of the time.
For me, I have always hated the doctor, and I will not go unless I absolutely feel like I'm dying or I'm forced to go.
I don't do well with shots, so going to the doctor brings out that fear that I might need to get a shot, which I'm not sure I will be able to handle by myself.
I always thought I would grow out of the fear, but it has stayed prevalent throughout my whole life.
When I was young, I would scream and cry if I had to get a shot.
I remember getting my shots for school, I had to have four nurses help the doctor hold me down just so they were able to give me the shots.
Another memory I have of the doctor is getting stitches in my eyebrow when I was eight years old and having to have eight people including my dad to hold me down because I was panicking so bad I couldn't stop wiggling around.
I think the funniest experience I had looking back on it now was when I was in the fifth grade.
I had cut my shin open all the way to the bone while in P.E. class and had to be rushed to the hospital.
My mother warned the doctors that I had a pretty severe fear of needles and to be a bit more discreet when bringing them in, but instead of listening to her, they walked in holding a really large needle straight in the air for all to see.
I freaked out immediately and had to have people hold me down because the shot was necessary as it was a numbing shot.
The people included my P.E. teacher, my guidance counselor who was also a good family friend, and my mom along with several nurses.
I still remember the feeling of the first shot in my leg, and it was so uncomfortable.
I got eight more in my leg after that to make sure they whole area was numb.
The funny part was my mother trying to stay calm while they give me the shots and start to stitch me up because she does not do well with graphic injuries or medical things.
The doctor eventually made her go sit down because she looked like she was going to pass out when she looked at my leg.
I still do very poorly getting shots or getting my blood drawn, and I'm not sure why or how to outgrow the fear.
When I was vaccinated for COVID, my mother had to go with me to hold my hand.
When I got COVID and had to get my blood drawn to be cleared to play my sport for my college, I had a full-blown panic attack.
The ladies who drew my blood were really nice and made sure to tell me that my fear was rational and that even one of them still had issues giving blood.
Two years ago I got my wisdom teeth out and had to be put under anesthesia with an IV.
Walking in to the office, I was completely fine, but as soon as I walked into the room, I had a panic attack.
I cried and hyperventilated, and after the surgery, I woke up still in a panic and asked for my mom; but they wouldn't let her come in because it was during COVID.
I have done what I can to try and get over this fear, and I will continue to try; however, if I can avoid going to the doctor, I will.
Even if I am sick, I will try to push through the sickness before I go to the doctor.
— Kassidy Brown is the Daily Telegraph's Features Editor. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.