In an Advent week dedicated to love, I guess it’s fitting to say that I gave blood yesterday.
It was actually only my second time to do so ever. Both times were inspired by my husband who gives every single time he is eligible.
The first time was ten years ago. It didn’t go so well. It was a blood donor event at school, and the phlebotomist helping me stuck me with a needle connected to a bag and then walked away. It took someone else alerting her to the fact that I looked like I was about to pass out for her to turn around. The bag was full of bright red blood and it had only been a minute. She took me off and then told me it was sad I wasted a donation.
That was ten years ago. I didn’t go back. Joey was present at the first one and assured me it was unusual and a one off, but I was good.
Lately, however, he’s been donating much needed plasma regularly. Every time he comes home, my boys ask him what the blue bandage means on his arm. It’s amazing how much they know about the whole process now.
Yesterday, I randomly decided to finally answer the subtle “So when you gonna donate again?” questions from my husband and I signed up for an appointment. Before I left, I told my boys I was nervous, and one five year old said “Remember mom… the doctors get your blood and they turn it into medicine for those that need it. So you shouldn’t be nervous. You are helping.” Geez, for a five year old, he knows how to tug at the heartstrings.
So, I went. I looked far away from the needle and the bag of blood and I donated. It wasn’t bad this time. While I was donating, I read the statistics that only like 4% of people eligible to donate do and that many only go once. I also read earlier online that there is a critical blood shortage.
So if you have ever thought “Maybe I should donate blood” and you are eligible (the requirements are right on the front page of Carter BloodCare’s website) consider that being your donation to send off 2020.
Today my prayer is for all of those who regularly need donated blood and for those donors, like my husband, who answer the call to show up again and again.
If you are one of those donors, let me know in the comments.