Madeline Rickard – Indy Writer
So with a holiday all about hearts, the perfect thing to write about is blood – not spilling the blood of our enemies, but sharing our hearts. Every so often our campus is visited by the Red Cross and we can give blood to those that need it. Here are some tips to keep in mind:
Have a filling meal before hand
Don’t settle for a bowl of cereal even if the line for eggs is long, and go for the protein. If you don’t, you might just get a little light headed before giving. It’s important to keep up your strength beforehand or you won’t last long with the needle.
In my case the mistake was getting lost on the way to give blood and spending hours in the heat before stumbling into the center. If you’re thirsty before you go in, be sure to find a water fountain and fill up before entering the waiting area to fill out your paperwork.
Once the needle is in, you’re given a stress ball to squeeze every once in a while to help get your blood circulating. It doesn’t matter how excited you are to finally help others; even if you want to do everything to the tune of Flight of the Bumblebee, don’t speed up the squeezing or else you could faint or throw up.
Make sure to stay with professionals until you’re sure you can be on your own
If you don’t want to seem like a high person wandering around campus, you had better stay with the doctors. In my case, I lost a little more blood than I should have and left a bit earlier than I needed to. My dorm was across campus and after vomiting into my hair, I stumbled through the lines of people only to gather many peculiar looks. I also lost my sticker along the way.
Don’t push yourself afterwards
Straining yourself is a bad idea so if you plan on going home, let the gentlemen carry your bags. Otherwise you could end up like me and move a step only to lie down and put your head between your legs to keep from passing out, repeating the process for the next two hours.
(Featured image retrieved from: http://www.stripes.com)