Today I donated plasma. I’m up to my 19th donation. It’s a mix of plasma and whole blood donations. But still. I’m proud.
In Australia donating blood and blood products is both voluntary and free. You can donate the moment you turn 16. That’s exactly how each of my siblings and I celebrated turning 16. We were so keen. Mum had been donating and we knew it was just a small way we could give to others.
I had a bit of a break since my last donation after being overseas and another last year after getting a tattoo. We are always in need of donors and I just pray Noone I love needs it themselves.
The blood donation process.
The interview to check your health. Easy. Mine took longer today as we had to check and clear each country I visited. All good. Bangkok, Thailand was the only hiccup, but because I was only in transit and didn’t leave the airport. Approved.
Blood pressure and pulse. Perfecto. The next part I find the worst pain of the whole thing. Testing Haemoglobin (Hb). All this entails is a finger prick. That’s it. That’s it!? Hold the front door. That hurts! Oh and today when the nurse squeezed my finger to draw blood, it just squinted up my arm. Who’s blood does that??? Mine, clearly.
My family compete in our blood donation stats. Haemoglobin levels. Blood pressure. Time it takes to donate. How many cycles Etc. All normal right? Anyway I needed to focus. Today was not my day for record breaking. I seemed to take FOREVER!
Then there was an issue. The nurse had to stop as the machine wouldn’t continue as it picked up I had high return pressure. So then I had to rest here for 30minutes as I didn’t get the red blood cells returned to me. Yew. Also have to wait 4 weeks to donate again. Damn you, my veins!
Snacks. You’re offered a drink while you’re donating. Today’s drink of choice was a yummy chocolate milkshake. Also how cute is that cup!
After donating. Snacks, snacks and more snacks.
This is the magical, delicious cookie. It is highly sought after. Rightly so.
Delicious. They offer everything from hot sausage rolls, cheese and jatz, fruit cake, Mars bars, cookies. Plus so many drinks. It’s amazing.
Oh Red Cross. How are more people not taking advantage of this amazing opportunity. For reals.
If you can, donate. Usually it goes smoothly. I mean, even though I had to stop, it was annoying not painful or anything.