Every month the Australian High Commission put on a 3k and 5 k fun run/walk. It is a lot of fun and they get local volunteer organizations involved. This past month, it was the Red Cross. After the run/ walk they would have a blood donation day. I decided, what the heck, I haven’t done so in awhile…let me donate.
After getting my exercise, I went to the join the line on donating blood. The line moved in no order that seemed to make sense, but after registering, I was told that it was great that I was donating because they needed B+ blood.
What was strange about donating was they have pamphlets (in English only..) telling you who is eligible to donate blood, and who is not…but they never ask you the questions. They don’t test your blood ahead of time, don’t check your blood pressure, it is a get right to it deal.
When it was my time, I warned the person with the needle that sometimes they have difficulties with my veins so I showed both of my arms to see which was better. He picked the one that was more convenient for where I was sitting. After the needle was in for awhile, he took it out and I had the worst pain ever! He apparently got it wrong and my vein was now swollen and full of pain. He immediately went to the other arm and started successfully the new needle.
I began to feel faint. I knew I should have said something but I was too weak to say something. I just tried to concentrate on being awake. I woke up with about people around me putting wet cloths around my head and my neck and someone trying to feed me chocolate milk (disgusting!) They had stopped the donation when I passed out.
I felt like a complete wuss. I have donated blood so many times in America, but for some reason, my body wasn’t up for it that day. So many people were looking at me all worried, especially a few who told me it was their first time donating. I tried to tell them that it was a one time thing, and it normally is not that bad…but I don’t know if they believed me after seeing my ordeal.
For the rest of my Saturday, I dealt with a horrible pain in my right arm, which continued a little bit into Saturday. On Monday, my arm was slightly blue in the area of my bad vein. (I would expect black and blue…but it was a cool blue color…) I am hoping that it goes away and that is the end of my blood donation drama.
Maybe I just have to wait for another time where they check blood pressure first to make sure I am completely healthy and ready to donate.