Donating Blood and my organs

13:32

For a while I have wanted to donate my blood because I have always thought that if I ever needed a blood transfusion in the future (let's hope I don't need one) I would have wanted that one person to donate their blood so I could still keep living my life and help me to get better and I would want to do the same for someone else who really needs it. 


I thought this would be great to donate as apart of one of my 60 challenges. But what makes this a challenge? I have never had a problem with needles and they don't bother me, but it was about sacrificing my time to do this for someone else, time that I don't have really considering I have a couple of weeks before my first exam and the fact that I am not a fit and healthy person as such. I haven't got any diseases or anything, but in 2014 I was diagnosed with Anaemia (Iron deficiency) which is a lack of iron in the body leading to a reduction of red blood cells. Red blood cells help store and carry oxygen throughout the body and if you lack in iron, you lack in red blood cells which then you lack in oxygen, simple. Because I have Anaemia, it makes me constantly tired, more prone to blood clots, headaches, decreases my appetite from time-to-time and looking pale all the time! -.-

So losing a pint of my blood during my donation was going to be a challenge in itself. I booked an appointment in Uxbridge for 5.50pm so that if anything happened I had the evening to rest which I did and have a blissful sleep! So I arrived to my appointment, filled out a form for my medical history etc. and then waited till it was my turn to be seen. My name was called out and a nurse saw to me, they asked me a couple of questions regarding piercings and any medication I have taken (your blood needs to be clean/pure in order for it to be donated), they checked my iron levels, fingers crossed hoping that I did have enough haemoglobin to donate! Which I did, yaay! I haven't taken prescribed medication for my Anaemia since , I now take vitamin pills you can buy off the shelf every other day or so. So it was back to waiting till there was a free seat for me to now give blood.

Before you give blood you should always make sure that you have drank at least 2L of water and have had a balanced meal throughout the day as well as good amount of sleep aiming for between 7 to 9 hours of sleep, which is what is recommended for adults. 
I was put into the chair, told to read about some exercises that could reduce fainting and a booklet about what is going to happen and a couple of side effects from the procedure but most of these side effects are like 1 in 100,000 so I wasn't worried. They cleaned the area and stuck a needle (the size of a tooth pick) in the bend of my left arm as that is where my vein was visible the most out of both arms then told me to clench and unclench my hand and keep doing so, so that the blood flows more quickly. 

This is where it went a bit downhill as my blood was moving very slow and kept making the machine beep! This was probably due to the fact that I may not have had enough water or was a little tired or that my veins are just thin. But eventually they got enough blood, they had to stop it early at 495 so not a whole pint, but I did it, I gave blood! When they took the needle out, I had to hold a swab over it and apply pressure and gradually got up only to have to sit back down because I was very dizzy like seeing lights dizzy, so they titled me upside down a little so the blood flows and got my to drink water through straw till they thought I was better.

Eventually I felt better and got a couple of nibbles and lemon squash before I went on my way home. So all in all it wasn't a bad experience but I just needed to prepare more beforehand. So if you would ever like to donate blood I recommend you do and it is a great feeling after knowing that you did something good for someone in need.

I also registered to donate my organs as well, there are two types of organ donation: 1) live 2) deceased, I chose the latter. I donated everything apart from my eyes (I need my eyes when I have an open casket at my funeral!). My religion isn't against organ donation either (I'm a Hindu) it actually encourages to give more than you receive, which is also the main reason I donated my organs because I feel like we take so much from the earth and others that we don't really give back as much as we should and one day someone might need that heart or liver to keep on living and I'm giving them that chance to do so.
I highly recommend you do both only if you can though and if you want to. I hope this encouraged you to do more for your fellow man!

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