Platelets

Photo on 2010-06-23 at 17.21

So the wife and I went to the hospital today to donate platelets. To recap: My son’s best friend, 3-year-old Andrew Cohen, has been diagnosed with a form of stage-four cancer. He needs platelets and well, we have them. All of us have them.

Arrived at the hospital at 1:30, filled out all the forms, made sure we met all the requirements. No, I haven’t had sex with a man since 1977 (a serious question). No, I don’t have HIV. Yes, am healthy. They pricked my finger for blood, then brought me into the donation room, where they hook people up to a machine. To say I hate needles is too mild—I loathe needles. Just wig me out. Hence, wasn’t so thrilled when the needle they inserted into my arm was a pretty thick one. And then I thought about it: A kid is seriously ill. And if he doesn’t use my platelets, someone else seriously ill will.

So I anticipated sitting there, needle in arm, for 90 minutes. Broought books, the new SI, my laptop.

I was rejected. As was my wife. We didn’t have enough platelets to give. A selfish side of me was happy—Get this needle out of my arm! But mostly, I was saddened. I want to help this boy; want him to come home and laugh and play and find adventure with my son. We’ll come back to donate blood, but, well, it feels incomplete.

That said, they gave us cookies. And a free mug.

Sigh.

PS: Here’s info how to donate. It’s harmless—and incredibly important.

3 thoughts on “Platelets”

  1. My wife used to donate platelets… and probably still will. It’s time consuming, but she’s that type of person. Me… well, I gave blood on college once and that was enough of an experience for me.

  2. Jeff…thanks for trying.

    As the recipient of donated platelets and blood, the generosity of others goes to a great cause.

    Most people that donate probably never meet the recipient of their donated platelets, plasma or blood. But know it’s not a cliche…that donation helped save another person’s life.

    After my stem cell transplant I spent two days attached to a constant flow of platelets. It’s funny….they’re yellow (which I was told was caused by the preservatives they use to store the platelets). I don’t know how many platelets I received, but without them my body likely wouldn’t have been able to fight off any infection.

    Needles suck…but I hope the gratification of helping save someone’s life is enough to overcome the needle.

  3. I’ve been reading your blog for a while now, i think almost since the beginning.

    hands down your best and most important post.

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