I donated blood yesterday, which is something I used to do all the time, and then I got pregnant (pregnant women can't donate blood), and then I just completely got out of the habit. And when I'm out of the habit, it feels impossible to get back IN the habit. But I went back in time and made it one of my New Year's Resolutions, and once I get back into the system it's easy: I just mark my calendar every 8 weeks and go do it (and if I forget they are SURE TO REMIND ME), and it's a happy sort of thing to do and makes me feel happy, and the people there praise me and give me pizza and brownies, and I get a chunk of time away from the house and children, and losing blood makes me feel slightly lightheaded in a pleasant way, and I schedule it at kid-dinnertime so I get a night off from that.
...Oh, and someone who needs blood gets some, so it's win-win.
I also like it because we've all got our little list of Nice Things We Do For Other People (donating money or items to charity, doing events for charity, volunteering, etc., etc., etc.) and this let's me put something on my list---a list that is right now somewhat lacking in volunteering and charity runs.
The part I don't like is this: it takes 5 minutes for the blood to go from me to the plastic bag, but it takes an hour to an hour and a half to do all the PAPERWORK and QUESTIONS and READING INFORMATIONAL MATERIALS. I TOTALLY GET why it has to be done every time, I TOTALLY get it, but it's tedious nevertheless. No, I still have not lived outside the U.S. No, I still haven't been in prison. No, I've still never taken medication for baldness. Yes, it still happened that 15 years ago I donated under a different surname. No, I'm still not allergic to iodine.
One major improvement is that I can answer most of the questions on a computer now, instead of having someone ask me each and every one including the long ones such as "Have you ever lived in any of the following countries:...." I'm sure this is a relief to the workers, too.
Would you like to tell me something on your Nice Things You Do For Other People list? I think that might be fun, since sometimes these things are kept modestly private (very few opportunities to say "OH HI GUESS WHAT, I WROTE A CHECK FOR $50!!"), and also it would be neat to get ideas.
Life-improving products, part 4 - (Continued from part 1, part 2, and part 3.) Stearns Youth Life Vest (photo from Amazon.com). I’d been too scared to take the kids to any body of water oth...