Monday, February 14, 2011
The kids and I were pulling into the parking lot of the gym today, when I saw it...the big red bus! The last time I gave blood was Halloween, it was easy to remember because the Tshirt has vampire teeth with dripping blood on it, and I happened to put that shirt on to go to the gym today. I figured it could be a new tradition for me to give blood on holidays. Last time Halloween, this time Valentine's Day, maybe I'd do it again on Memorial Day...no such luck! My iron tends to hover right around the threshold of being able to donate blood. Usually if I know in advance the bus will be somewhere (usually church) I make a mental note and take iron supplements for about a week in advance. It does the trick. So today, I sent Jonathan and Madi into the gym and went into the bus with my usual, "let's check my iron first just in case." There must be a lot of iron in all of the chocolate I've been eating today because it was fine. So went I went through the usual checklist, yes I have been pregnant, I have three kids, I had basal cell carcinoma and it was successfully removed, no I've never done any of the illegal and immoral things they ask about, blah, blah, blah. Let me back up a little, on Halloween when I gave blood, I found out that starting last fall if you go to Cozumel, you can't give blood for a year. While my most recent cruise was a surprise present for me, I knew Mike had been looking into another one and I specifically requested that we not go to Cozumel again because of the donating blood thing. No problem we went to Labadee and Jamaica. Anyone who has talked to me about the cruise knows my guilt over going to Labadee (which is in Haiti) and just basking in the sunshine (actually in the shade, remember I have had skin cancer more than once) and not doing something tangible to help the people there (we did spend a little money and supposedly Royal Caribbean does a lot of good for the Haitian people, so I tried to let it go). Well now I have a whole new reason to feel guilty about Haiti... I can't give blood for a year!!! UGH!!! This really frustrates me. There is so little that one person can do to improve the world and donating blood has been a no-brainer for me. I am eligible, unlike a lot of people, and it is easy for me to do. It really bothers me how few people are eligible to give blood AND it bothers me even more how many fewer people are willing to give blood! So here in my tiny piece of cyber space, I make this plea. If you are able to donate blood, would you consider giving it a try? If I can't, the least I can do is try to encourage others to, I'll watch your kids or bake a bread for you or something. Give it a try, it's not as bad as you might think. Also it will make you feel good to know you're doing your part to help someone in need. Since I didn't give blood, I did at least spend a little time on the elyptical at the gym (not very long because the kids had already been in there for a long time). At they gym, my new "playaway" (digital audio book) from the library wasn't working (not my day so far huh?), so I had sometime to ponder my frustration over the blood thing. I kept coming back to an episode of FRIENDS where Joey and Phoebe debate whether there is such a thing as a selfless good deed. Like I said I didn't workout very long, so I didn't really come to any conclusion on this one, but the bottom line is, it does make you feel good to do good deeds. Likewise, it makes you feel pretty stinky when you can't do the good deed that you want to do, and therein lies the frustration!