August 26th, 2002


Give Blood!

I tried to give blood today, but they didn't want my blood. I was pretty bummed. Turns out my hematocrit is only 35%, and they insist it be at least 38%. This generally means low iron. I just took a vitamin. They say it's nothing to worry about, but they said they definitely won't let me try again later on today.

I'm bummed for two reasons. The first is that they need blood, very badly. Reserves are very low right now, and donated blood saves countless lives.

The second reason is very simple: I really enjoy giving blood. People always look at my strangely when I say that, and maybe it's kinda crazy. But I view donating blood as a beautiful thing. It is literally giving of myself, giving a vital part of my body to help another human being. It is such a direct way of actually saving lives. I mean sure, I run in the Race for the Cure and I do other assorted charitable donations and events when I'm able, but none of those are as immediate and as pure as giving a little of my blood to somebody who needs it. There is nothing simpler...I mean, it is easy and free, and they give you cookies afterward. Yet you're performing a vital service. It's wonderful.

I wish they'd have let me do it. I'll go try again in a week or so, and hopefully my iron will be back up to par.