I’m going tell you the truth right off the bat: I did not donate blood today. But I am asking you to take my place instead. Before you silently accuse me of being a hypocrite, please let me explain.
I have a needle phobia. I cringe when I pass a blood donation bus which is followed up by waves of guilt and shame because I know how vital/easy/life-saving/not painful it is to give blood. I can’t even being to imagine what the person who receives my blood is going through. I could possibly save a life and all I have to do is fill a bag of blood while laying on my back for 10 minutes and then stuff my face with free cookies. So I decided to finally grow up and stop crying over spilt milk…err blood.
A few weeks ago when I started planning out 100acts I made an appointment with the blood bus for May 6th at 11:00AM. Today I woke up feeling extremely grateful for the gallons of blood swirling inside my body and ready to give some to anyone who will take it. I walked up to the bus with my eyes wide and a big nervous smile on my face ready to do this! TAKE ALL THE BLOOD.
To my frustration, The CDC has deferral policies on people who have traveled to certain cities around the world due to possibly being exposed to diseases such as malaria. Puerto Vallarta? Deferred. Non-major cities in Thailand? Double deferred. I am not allowed to donate blood for a year due to possible dormant malaria that could be in my system.
I understand that these restrictions are necessary, but I am seriously bummed out. Not only is it crucial to donate blood, I personally felt as though I would be overcoming a selfish obstacle that stood in the way of participating in something bigger than me; an act that is entirely for someone else.
So I ask whoever is reading this to first check blood donor eligibility here on the Red Cross website, and then please take my place to donate blood. If you would like to make an appointment click here otherwise they do take walk-ins. It’s a fast and simple process that makes a big impact. Next May I’ll be in the donor chair next to you, but for now I’m signing up as a volunteer to help the donors with what else: Stuffing their face with free recovery cookies.
For more information on why to donate blood, click here.