Want to be a hero? It’s simple. Donate Blood. Want to do something amazing? It’s easy. Donate Blood. Want to save a life? It’s nearly effortless. Donate Blood. One pint of blood can save up to three lives. Currently only three out of every one hundred people living in America donate blood, yet every two seconds someone needs blood.
Have you ever stopped and wondered about what a difference donating one pint of your blood can make in someone else’s life? With National Blood Donation Month being June with a World Blood Donation Day of June 14th, I can’t help but think of my two unknown heroes that donated their blood when I needed it most. It saddens me that they cannot know that they helped to save my life. I went into the hospital for a routine hip replacement surgery and had an adverse reaction to the anesthesia and next thing I know, I was rushed into the ICU where I remained for twenty four hours. This was a major setback and unexpected. Since my body was not healing properly some of the blood that I lost during surgery needed to be replaced immediately. Luckily for me the hospital had the two pints that were needed on hand.
Ever since then my husband, Rob, has started to donate his blood whenever he can. Recently we were at an event which featured some of my favorite TV stars and the American Red Cross truck was there and I remember how delighted I felt to see that one of my favorite stars took the time in between her appearances and donated blood.
As a young girl I remember my sister, Adele, donated blood frequently. Since I looked up to her, I decided to donate blood when I became old enough to do so. I recently asked her what made her start donating and she surprised me with her answer. “At first I did it to get out of work for a bit of time.” After that first time, she felt good about doing something that only cost a little bit of love and has a lot of rewards.
My brother -in- law Kent is another hero. He donates his Platelets and has been doing so for the last two years. He has regularly donated his blood during the past seven years. He got his start at his church. He explained to me that donating Platelets is painless and they have only a shelf life of seven days. They are crucial for cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy. The best time to donate them is on Saturday or Sunday so that when Monday comes around, they will have them available for the people who require them.
The next time you hear a catchphrase from the American Red Cross, and decide to donate blood, you may just have the opportunity to be someone’s hero and then they have the power to continue to pay it forward and who knows the kindness and compassion that will happen in this world because you decided to give up a pint of your blood.
The requirements for donating blood are: You must be in good health. You must be at least 17 years old and you must weigh a minimum of 110 pounds. In the state of Georgia, if you are interested in donating blood and you are under 17 years old, there is a short parent/guardian consent form that can be found on the Red Cross website. The parent/guardian must fill out and sign it. The donor will present it at the time of donation. If you are unable to donate blood, there are countless volunteer opportunities to consider at each blood drive.
To learn more about blood donation and volunteer opportunities please visit:
www.redcrossblood.org/ or call 1-800-REDCROSS (1-800-733-2767)
Cobb County Donor Center:
2145 Roswell Road, Suite 250
Marietta, GA 30062
Telephone number: 770-578-1977