A lot of things in my life are weighing me down right now, and they all feel like rejection. Well, okay, most of them actually are rejection. I have heaps of rejections letters from agents, loads of rejection e-mails from job applications, and another kind of rejection in my life that has built up over the course of many years (until it was so obvious even la-la-land-me could see it), but which is far too personal to go into on a public blog. Suffice it to say, I don’t feel intelligent, capable, or pretty at this point in my life.
But today I did something positive, and it made me feel better: I gave blood.
This year I made the decision not to vote, based on my own exhaustion and lack of belief in the flawed election system. At the end of my blog post on that topic, I mentioned that maybe I would, instead, go give blood on Election Day. Well, today, November 6, 2012, I did just that. I made an appointment online a week ago, and this morning I drove down. I was pre-screened and then screened. Soon I was reclining in something resembling a dentist’s chair as lifesaving crimson fluid pumped out of me, via my own heart beat, through a tube, and into a little bag. Despite the fact that I’ve donated before, it’s always weird when the blood first starts to flow. The tube is suddenly warm against my arm, and it takes a second to register that the warmth is because it’s fresh from my body. The actual donation took about ten minutes; the whole experience was finished in well under an hour.
During that time, the phlebotomists kept up positive conversations with me and the other donors. They made me laugh, which is something I haven’t done enough of lately. I was grateful for the positive, human interaction. One guy even flirted with me, in a not-so-subtle way, so that even I knew I was being flirted with. It made me feel pretty.
And knowing that I was doing something that would help save up to three lives, according to my blood center’s website, made me proud of myself.
Yeah, I need to get out of the house more. Working on that. But if you need to get out more, too, giving blood isn’t a bad way to achieve that goal. There is always-always-always a need for blood, and you’d be helping to save lives. In fact, you could go today. Even if you already voted. 😉