Blood Drive

Did you know that when you donate blood they siphon an entire pint out of you? I mean, that’s like an entire carton of Ben & Jerry’s. That’s a lot of blood.

You probably did know that. I, however, did not until tonight. The more you know.

So yes, I just donated blood for the first time and I had more fun losing a pint of blood than most people have eating a pint of Ben & Jerry’s.

That was a poor analogy. I don’t imagine it’s all that enjoyable downing an entire pint in one sitting.

And no, I don’t have some strange fetish for getting stuck with needles. I always find it amusing when people say, “I really don’t like needles,” as a reason for not giving blood. By all means, don’t donate if you don’t really desire to– and you owe no explanation– but I, for one, do not donate blood for the needle prick. Does anyone like that part? Aside from those addicted to narcotics I don’t believe many have a penchant for needles. Even then I think it’s what happens after that gets them, not the needle.

I enjoy donating blood so much specifically because I dislike the process. It’s the sacrifice, the unconditional gift that makes it so valuable. I don’t like seeing blood, I don’t like losing my energy, I don’t like missing out on three hours with my husband, and I definitely don’t like the needles.

But I do love giving.

I’ve spent almost all of my life with my head buried in the sand, mired in self-absorption– primarily out of necessity. Now I have everything I ever wanted and more, and my heart just naturally overflows with the abundance.

I want to share. I want to give. There’s nothing that makes me feel so alive as serving this network of fellow brother and sisters in the world.

I still do very little for others. My family consumes much of my energy and many of my selfish tendencies linger. But I am flexing and strengthening my capacity for charity (physical and emotional) and in the process there is now one more pint of blood available in New York.

I’d say it was a good day.

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