As mentioned on my Twitter, I wanted to donate blood (gift of a second chance at life) just as Jesus Christ had shed His blood for us on Good Friday. I was hoping that I could donate around Easter for that very reason and was glad when I received a call to book my appointment for Saturday.
I arrived at the Canadian Blood Services clinic, which was coincidentally located next to the hospital I was born in, at around 10AM and checked in with the receptionist. As this was my first time, she gave me a sticker with ‘1st Time Donor’ on it.
My iron level was tested and I was asked to fill out a questionnaire on my health and past (travels, piercings, etc.). Once that was completed, I then met with a nurse who asked me the rest of the questions on the page to make sure my blood would be eligible for use. My blood pressure, body temperature, and heart rate were also checked. Once I was approved, I was taken to a reclining ‘armchair’ to start the blood donation process. It was 10:38 when the needle was inserted and 6 minutes later, I was done, to my surprise as I’d thought the blood donation would take 10 minutes at least! I then realised that the next 5 min. was to put pressure on my injection spot to stop the bleeding. My other arm became sore from applying pressure to my other arm that I was relieved when a nurse came over to give me a band-aid. Next stop was the ‘resting station’ where we were offered juice and/or water, as well as snacks like Oreos, Bits & Bites mix, and jam tarts. I was also given a sticker that had ‘Be nice to me… I donated blood today!’ and a blood droplet-shaped pin with a 1 inside the maple leaf.
I spent a good 10-15 minutes just snacking and taking it easy though I felt perfectly fine. For the rest of the day, I did not experience any dizziness or itchy skin or any other problems, for which I’m very thankful!
My blood donation experience has made me more conscious of what I eat and drink. In the past, because of my high metabolism, I ate a lot of junk food (this month was a good time for me as I was on Lent and avoided these unhealthy snacks). Even though my next appointment is 2 months away, I want to take better care of my body and make sure the blood donated is healthy. 🙂
If you’re in Canada and you’re interested in learning more about what you can donate, check out the Canadian Blood Services website www.blood.ca for more information on:
- Why you should donate
- Types of donation (not just blood!)
- Donation Process (more detailed than mine)
- Everything you should know (pamphlet they make you read)
Are you ready? Sign up!