#3 Give blood.

“Do your little bit of good where you are; it’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.”
– Desmond Tutu

Everyday for the past three years, I’ve walked by the Canadian Blood Services building on my way to work, making a mental note to donate blood “next week.” Next week rolled into next month, next month into next year…and so on.

I couldn’t think of a better (and more terrifying) way to finish an otherwise mundane Tuesday morning. I’m a notorious wuss when it comes to needles; I avoid and delay blood tests and vaccinations like nobody’s business.

Upon arriving at the clinic, I’m pleasantly surprised at how efficient their setup is after years of dealing with surly nurses in packed walk-in clinics. After being greeted by a slew of friendly faces, I move my way through stations verifying my eligibility to donate, and once they’re sufficiently satisfied I’m not a heroin addict, I’m quickly whisked into a room where a nurse checks my hemoglobin levels.

I’ve never had my finger pricked before but my hands are shaking as she sanitizes my finger and checks my circulation. “This part is usually the scariest.” Gee. Thanks, lady.

It hurts; but not as much as anticipated. 119. The measurement required is 125 to be an eligible donor. She asks me if I want to try again. Why not? Already here…118.

Crap. She smiles kindly and tells me to contact my doctor and come back in half a year once I have my hemoglobin issues sorted, and sends me on a way with a nifty handout, “Why do I have low hemoglobin?”

Dejected, I walk past a room full of chatty donors enjoying their post-donation snacks and apple juice. Smug bastards. (Just kidding. Kind of.)

On my walk home, some of the disappointment begins to lift. Despite not being able to donate blood, I will count this as an attempted act of kindness. If I hadn’t gone today, I wouldn’t have received the gentle push to go visit my doctor (eugh!).

I will absolutely be back and donate my kick-ass hemoglobin-full blood in 6-8 months! Stay tuned.

Total Kindness Cost: $0

365daysofkindness

12 Comments

  1. At least you tried!! I attempted to give blood when I was younger, but I became very nauseous and ended up getting sick that evening, so that is one thing I won’t try again unfortunately.

    • Thanks. That’s unfortunate, maybe you had low iron? Either way, I will definitely try again once I have everything sorted. 🙂

  2. You tried, and that is what counts and is truly an act of kindness, blood donors saved my little boy’s life at birth, he had to have 2 blood transfusions, and it’s posts like this that gives blood banks a boost, so I’d say that’s an act of kindness paid out!

    • Thanks, blabbermama. Wow – really puts things into perspective when you hear about someone whose life it has actually been affected by. I will certainly be going back and plan to be a regular donor (as long as my hemoglobin behaves!).

  3. The thought counts for a lot and your good intentions benefited you. Taking care of yourself will not only make you better off, it will enable you to do more for others as you intend. You can encourage others around you to donate which is all I have been able to do since my hemoglobin levels went down after my first and only blood donation.
    Love the idea of this blog and I am looking forward to seeing what other ideas for kindness are to come.

    • Thank you! I will definitely encourage others to do it. I went to the doctor today and got iron pills to hopefully get everything in order.

      Appreciate you stopping by and leaving your thoughts and kind words.

  4. Well done for making your first visit. Despite my sensitive stomach I’ve been donating for over 20 years, whenever I could; I recently gave my 35th donation. Just think about the tea and treats that you get afterwards!

    • I’m a sucker for tea and treats! How awesome that you’ve done 35 donations. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  5. I’ve always thought of donating blood as such an amazing, selfless thing to do, but I’ve never done it myself. I’ve just looked into where I can donate locally and I’m definitely going along on the next available date. Thank you for the inspiration!

    • Thanks for taking the time to comment! I’m glad this inspired you to do so. Let me know how it goes. 🙂

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