That Girl’s Blog: Follow Through and Pay It Forward

“This is going to sound like an odd request… There was a pretty bad motorcycle accident this morning…. It’s a small community of bikers here on the Cape. If you want to do something rather than staying glued to FB for updates, go donate blood today. It may or may not help in this situation, but you CAN help save a life… and at the end of the day, EVERY LIFE is precious.”

This was my facebook status post at 9:11AM on Friday September 23rd, but it could have been any day. Terrible accidents are unpredictable and can happen at any time.

The post was “liked” and “shared” again and again throughout the day. I wondered if anyone followed through, or if they simply thought it was a good idea.

Over the next 72 hours I was involved in several organized charity events. Friday afternoon we helped to collect non-perishable food items for the new CORD Mobile Food Pantry. Saturday, we helped to raise funds for the Cape and Islands Police K-9 Relief Fund. Sunday was the Mick Flick Charity motorcycle ride… All of these amazing charity groups doing what they can for our community. Unfortunately, like many people on the Cape, I don’t have much, if any, extra money at the end of each month. At times I feel badly that I cannot do more for these charities. This is why I am happy to donate my time.

Throughout the weekend, the images from the accident scene weighed heavy on my mind. My post and plea for my friends to give blood continued to float through my news feed. Of the hundred or more people who responded to my post, I wondered how many actually took the time to look up information on local blood drives. Do you know that you can simply walk into the hospital and donate blood on the spot? It doesn’t cost anything. In fact, you might even walk away with a gift certificate as a thank you for your donation.

I have a handful of friends who regularly donate blood. I admire them. I am not very good at donating blood: I don’t like needles, I blanch at the sight of my own blood, and I bruise. In fact, the last time I gave blood, my arm swelled up with a goose egg and I was black and blue and green for weeks. So what? A bruised arm and a needle “pinch” is nothing compared to what a person in need of blood is going through.

Monday after work I headed over to Cape Cod Hospital to see if they had an opening at the Nicholas G. Xiarhos Blood Donor Center. It was very quiet, so the phlebotomist was happy to sit me down and go through the initial health screening. Blood pressure, temperature, and a quick finger prick to test for something-or-other. Everything seemed acceptable, so I was seated on a reclining chair with my feet up. I will spare you the other details, but between you and me, I did get a little woozy when Terry hooked me up.

I am going to stop my story right here.

I want to take a moment to tell you WHY I am telling you this. I am not bragging that I donated blood. I am not a special person for doing this. I am not a universal donor with Type-O blood. I want you to know that if I can take an hour out of my day to give a pint of blood, most anyone can. Yes, there are restrictions and some people are not eligible donors. If you haven’t given blood before, or if it’s been a while, please consider taking an hour out of your day.

There is a blood drive at Cape Cod Hospital this Wednesday (9/28) from 10am to 4pm. Also, you can follow the link to a list of upcoming blood drives with Cape Cod Health Care. All the blood they collect stays here on the Cape. If you have any questions, please ask. You can find information on their website, or I am happy to talk with you, too.

Click Here for Upcoming Blood Drives.

Listen, I am a great big chicken when it comes to doctors and hospitals. If I can do this a few times a year, so can you. Look! I’ll even share this really bad picture of myself hooked up! It’s not a great picture, but I wasn’t giving blood to look good. I was there to help someone else get better… or maybe even survive.

Cat giving-blood

About Cat Wilson

Cat Wilson is "That Girl" on Cape Country 104 – a Cape Cod native and longtime Cape radio personality. She is a passionate supporter of Military and Veteran causes on the Cape and also hosts local music spotlight program, “The Cheap Seats” on Ocean 104.7.

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