By Alecia Burgett
I have always been scared of needles, even when working in the field of veterinary medicine. However, I found myself always wanting to donate blood, so I was in a catch 22. My story is a simple story, but one that is very personal to me.
It was on a Monday morning that my mother came into my room to update me that my great-grandmother had gone to the hospital last night because of a fall. This wasn’t the first time she had fallen, but it was more serious then before. We went to the hospital, and seeing my grandmother lying there so helpless was terribly difficult. She was hooked up to fluids and couldn’t even recognize who I was. My mother and I gave her a hug and after a few words went on our way.
I had talked to my mother earlier about wanting to donate blood, but had told her no one would donate with me. She asked why I didn’t just visit the Blood Center myself and see what they would say. I decided then that I didn’t want to use other people’s inaction as an excuse anymore. While shopping near the Federal Way Donation Center, I decided to stop in just to ask a few questions about eligibility. The woman at the desk was very helpful and asked if I wanted to donate right then. I got clammy and fumbled my words but decided if not now, then when?
My grandmother was in the hospital along with many other mothers, fathers, sons, and daughters, and who knew when they would need the blood I could donate? I filled the paperwork, went through my mini physical and sat in the chair. My palms were cold and I was shaking, but I knew that what I was doing was life-changing to someone, a stranger. The poke was so easy and before I knew it the process was over. The staff at the center was so caring and helpful in calming my nerves; they talked me through the whole donation, from start to finish. I will never know who gets my donations but I know they will appreciate every donation. Rest assured I will be donating every chance I get, and I will be thinking of my grandmother every time I donate.
Schedule your own blood donation at a donor center.