I gave blood today. It was a first for me, and while I felt good about doing it, the actual act of giving it was a little odd. And apparently I had a slightly odd reaction physically – which worries me slightly 🙂

First of all, we ended up having most of the afternoon off work from this – one reason right there. I went with some work colleagues who roped me into this, but surprisingly there was only 6 of us – we’re not a small company! So I felt like a good guy anyway.

We waited for a while, filled out a form in which answering no to everything is a good thing, then did an interview and a small pin-prick blood test. Apparently my iron level is a little low, but still within normal…

Then the blood giving itself. It all seems fine at first – the needle goes in fine. Then after about 5-7 minutes I guess I feel a little light headed. Then nauseous. So they stop. Then I get the special treatment: fan, wet towel, lots of attention. In the end, the attention was worrying me more than my condition. I can’t tell if they were just being nice or if they’re attention was really warranted.

Anyway, after a rest period, I get into the after-room with the rest of my work colleagues. Everyone seems to have taken it better than me, but at least we get the milkshakes now. That’s the other incredibly good thing about the whole process – free food. You HAVE to have a lot of fruit juice and cheese/biscuits beforehand, and then you can have milkshakes along with more of everything else after that. In the end, my biggest worry was being so full 🙂

I was fine after a short while. Apparently this was at least partially a first timers reaction – the last time I had blood tests was when I was in hospital as a kid, so maybe there were too many bad connotations in it for me. Anyway, all is good, I have a bandage on my arm for the night, but no problems.

Everyone should give blood, if at all possible. It’s incredible the list of things that can strike you off the register now, so it’s even more important that those eligible do it. It’s not that bad, and once you get used to it it’s even easier. I’ll probably do it again regardless of where I’m living in 3 months time. Sure I was motivated partially because of the Bali thing, but blood is needed all the damn time. So do it!

This was apparently a public service message brought to you by me… ! 🙂

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