As soon as we got into our room and were behind a closed door, I privately laid into him. I was so frustrated because he would not shut up about the goddamn IV’s. I get it, I do. He doesn’t mean anything by his complaints other than to share what he’s thinking. Frankly, it’s probably also a sign of his anxiety or worry that he was going to need blood work while we were there.
Gavin’s developmentally about six years old and that makes his eighteen year old body, very deceiving.
The problem wasn’t that Gavin was fearing these things or even that he incessantly talked about them in a very outdoor type voice. The problem was that he was saying these things in the presence of toddlers there to get chemotherapy.
I can’t say for sure that any of the kids or their parents heard what Gavin was saying but I pray they didn’t. I can’t imagine being in their shoes and hearing someone who looks like a grownup, complaining about how he’d had IV’s in the past.
Everything is relative and I get that but at the very least, this would come across as insensitive.
These familes are going through so much as it is, the idea that we would have anything to do with making things harder, through our words or actions is heartbreaking for me.
I explained to Gavin that I understand he doesn’t like IV’s and by now, everyone within earshot knows he doesn’t like IV’s. I also told him that there were kids here fighting cancer and complaining about a needle stick is not appropriate, under the circumstances. I tried to get him to see things from their perspective but he lacks the capacity for things like that.