I do my best to write about things I believe (and hope) interests my readers. I think it is something that all writers strive for. But on this day, I need to write about something that means something to me, even if no one else reads it. Obviously I hope you're reading, and of course I am very interested in everything I write, but you get the point.
Today's post isn't about my planner, nor my wedding, nor a new craft I've taken up. Instead, it is a plea to please, if you are eligible, go donate blood!
You read that right, I'm asking you to find your nearest donation center and GO. Literally, go save a life. I know it sounds corny, but it is completely true. Maybe I'm so enthusiastic about this since I just donated today. But I also donated 56 days ago, and 56 days before that. For me, donating blood isn't something I do, it's a way of life.
For me, donating blood is a very personal decision. When my mom was brought to the hospital after her car accident, surgeons used over 20 units of blood trying to save her life. That's 20 people who took an hour out of their day to make a difference. And while all the blood in the world couldn't prevent us from losing her, I think about those donors every eight weeks when I'm sitting in that chair. I can only hope that my blood goes on to save a life, or that at least it gives someone a fighting chance.
Your reason for donating doesn't have to hit as close to home as mine does. In fact, I'll even accept "J made me do it!" But seriously, if you are able, there is absolutely NO reason to not donate. And don't try the "I'm afraid of needles" excuse on me, because there's a pretty good chance that whoever is on the other end needing that blood is afraid of needles too. They certainly don't have a choice in the matter.
I know I sound brutal on this, but it is something I think is very important. For those of you statistic lovers out there, here are a few interesting facts from the Red Cross:
Ok, I'll get off my soapbox now. Sorry to be so aggressive with this topic- it's just so important. Obviously, I'm not asking you to donate if you are ineligible, so please check with your local donation center for their eligibility requirements. Also, try to donate directly to hospitals that have a blood bank first, as many third party companies sell the blood to hospitals whereas in hospital donations go directly to the in house patients.
- Every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood
- More than 38,000 blood donations are needed every day
- The average red blood cell transfusion is approximately 3 pints (saving up to three lives!)
- More than 1 million new people are diagnosed with cancer each year. Many of them will need blood, sometimes daily, during their chemotherapy treatment
- Blood cannot be manufactured – it can only come from generous donors
- Every blood donor is given a mini-physical, checking the donor's temperature, blood pressure, pulse and hemoglobin to ensure it is safe for the donor to give blood
- The average adult has about 10 pints of blood in his body. Roughly 1 pint is given during a donation
- A healthy donor may donate red blood cells every 56 days, or double red cells every 112 days
Whew! I feel better, though I hope I didn't scare you off with my begging. Are any of you donors, or were donors in the past? Have any questions for me on my donation experiences? As always, leave your comments below!
Labels: blood donation, Health