You may remember this post where I tried and failed spectacularly to give blood. Well, I sorted that all out in November and was able to give blood for the first time. Yay! I even got a sticker! I probably should’ve written about it but you know, busy busy busy!
It was all very exciting at the time, you join one queue, they stab your finger, test your iron, you join another queue, they call you over, you sit in a chair, they stick a needle in you, you sit looking bored and miserable for 45 minutes (well I do and it’s probably only about 5 minutes but it seems like ages!) and then you get up and you go and sit at the table you’ve had your eye on since you walked in. The refreshments table! Free biscuits and a cuppa FTW! Then you go home, maybe a bit woozy.
But then comes the best bit. You get a letter from the NHS saying thanks. Not only does it say thanks, but you also get a bunch of leaflets and a donor card. My donor card is red. This is for people who have donated 1-4 times. Apparently, for donating a second time you get a nifty little key fob with your blood type on it. As you progress up the ranks (as if it were a computer game) they give you all kinds of shit as a reward. Check out the swag here! That’s pretty rad huh?!
So then I did the math. You can only donate once every 16 weeks I believe. I reckon if I do every single one from now until I’m 65, I should be able to get my mitts on that decanter! Most definitely the crystal plate. Hehe!
But, am I really motivated by some crystal stuff? No, not particularly. I got quite a big shock when I got my letter. I’m not sure why it shocked me so much but it did. I’ve been lucky enough to have never been in a major accident or ever needed a transfusion. I’m touching wood here! I don’t believe I’ve even known anyone who has needed one either. Touching wood again! This means I’ve never had my blood type brought up as an issue. I have this old baby book thing from when I was a kid. It’s pretty much the only thing I have from my childhood. In it, it says blood group O and I’ve just believed it, filled in all my forms putting down O. I have no idea why it says O but I am actually A RH NEGATIVE which is apparently an incredibly rare type of blood and is in demand. Oh super exciting right?!
Had I known this from an earlier age, I wouldn’t have left it so damn late to give blood. I could’ve (and probably would’ve) contributed for most of the last 10 years or so. And it is this that makes me all the more determind to give blood regularly now and if you can give blood, then you absolutely should. You never know when you or a relative or a close friend will need a transfusion. I’m touching all of your woods!
So what are you waiting for? Go here and find your nearest centre and do something amazing…give blood!