Bowery Mural

When I Give Blood...

Saturday, 24 November 2012 never goes to plan.

I never thought I'd be saying this but i got a letter last week from The Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service. A few weeks ago i headed to the Albert Hall in Stirling for what was to be my second time giving blood. I honestly don't know why it took me until last year to actually do it.

I waited in the queue, got checked in and sat in the seating area waiting until they called my name. The hall was busy with people all there doing their bit. I felt a sense of pride that i was doing this. I'm not a scaredy cat but needles aren't my favourite thing.

My name was called and i was taken to a make-shift booth (an area with a curtain around it). The nurse went over my questionnaire. It was sent to me in the post so had all of my details already printed on it, with a few other sentences that made no sense to me but did to the nurse. After here double checking with me that i'd filled it in properly she got a senior nurse over to explain...

After my first giving blood session last November, i'd received a letter to say that due to a technicality the couldn't use my blood. It had gotten contaminated somewhere between my vein and the testing centre.

This time the senior nurse informed me that due to the above they only take a couple of test tubes (instead of the bags) of blood and get it tested again to make sure everything was ok. It's normal she said. Ok I replied, but the worrier in me had started to reappear.

Anyway, i was sat at another seating area and a nurse came over, stuck the needle in my arm and promptly took 4 test tubes of my blood. She labelled them, marked them up and bagged them, then sent me on my way. I was feeling somewhat deflated. I realised at that point that i wanted to have that feeling of doing something good, to help others. That's my real reason for doing this, to help others. To do my bit.

Last week a letter came through. I recognised it because they type them in comic sans!!!.... I know!!

see! comic sans letter... 
I opened it and once again it read that my blood had somehow been spoiled again(!!) and that this time i wouldn't be called to give blood again within 2 years!! TWO YEARS. My heart fell. Literally fell into my stomach. WHAT'S WRONG WITH ME?!!

(Interlude: apologies for the overuse of exclamation marks).

The actual words are that my 'samples taken are showing a false reaction. I can, however, reassure you that extended detailed test have not confirmed the screening test result, and we can therefore conclude that this is a false reaction, due to the extremely sensitive nature of our test systems'. I was left feeling really really really disappointed but kind of reassured by their serious letter that had been typed in comic sans... hhmm.
Aw man. It really knocked me again. I want to do some good. Something that people will benefit from. This is how my feelings started when I ventured off the Nepal (go back to the start of this blog if you want to read that story!).

So who knows... out of some minor disappointment, a new adventure may rise up. But if you can stand it, please do give blood. It's relatively painless and a great thing to do. Please.

What should I do next?

Angela x


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