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trinube

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Warning: cathartic, self indulgent post follows :blush:

Today marks exactly 1 year since my father (Reg) passed away. A few days after the funeral we were at mum's place sorting out his belongings and a small, Red Cross booklet caught my eye. It listed the dates he'd donated blood and I was staggered by just how many entries there were. Kinda spookily, the very first day he'd donated was June 5, 1945 - my daughter was born on June 5, 1998 - seemed like an omen.

He'd been actively donating blood for over 50 years. They reckon each blood donation can save up to 3 lives so it would seem my old man was nothing short of a miracle man. We're talking hundreds of people he could have saved.

Couldn't understand how anyone could do this - since first fainting from a needle at age nine I'd pretty much been a needle hater all my life. To voluntarily lay an arm out for a needle just didn't register with me as sane. The height of my irrational fear came when I had 4 stitches in a head cut without anesthetic because I didn't want the local. :blink:

Every time I looked at this book it made me remember how selfless he was - he was the sort of man who would give you the shirt off his back, even if it was his only shirt. It often reduced me to tears which was a bit strange, as that didn't happen when he died.

So to cut a long story short today, 12 months to the day after he died, I walked into the Red Cross Blood Collection Centre in Clarence St in an effort to honor my father. The first question I was asked in the interview was "So why did you decide to give blood" which immediately reduced me to a sniveling wreck. :cry: It drained every bit of energy to blurt out 'I'm doing it for Reg' and she clearly understood this was not going to be easy. She glanced at my pocket where Dad's book was giving me moral support. As she took my ever rising blood pressure I could feel the emotion bleeding from every pore - this was emotionally killing me. We waited for a few minutes to get the BP down and headed into the waiting room where 'Sally' came and looked after me.

After undergoing quite a few surgeries I don't faint anymore - a fact I'm sure Sally appreciated. The procedure really was relatively painless but I still mindlessly babbled to keep my mind off what was happening. Sally listened intently - far more intently than I deserved. As much as I wanted to tell her why I was there, just the thought of my dad left me paralysed to the core. When it was over I walked into the 'recovery' area and had the worst banana milkshake of my life.

If you've given blood in the past you're probably thinking HTFU buttercup! But for me this wasn't just about giving blood, this was about doing something of which dad would have been proud. I've done a lot of things in my life but none have made me as proud as leaving 500 ml of red at the counter today. I've decided every November 10 whilst I'm able, I'm going to line up again. And for the heck of it, June 5 sounds like a good date too.

If you've never donated blood, give it a shot. Be selfless, help others. And if they ask you why you've decided to donate, tell them you're "doing it for Reg". ;)

Edited by trinube
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Good onya Trinube i think the old man would be proud,just reminded me i,m due to give a bit blood cheers powdo

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Great story, trinube. And good on you for donating.

 

I work at/for the Aust Red Cross Blood Service (aka blood bank) but in the office we're removed from the great stories and reasons each donor has. When I do visit the donor centre, and see all the "real people" it reminds me why I'm proud to work there.

 

Your story is another great reason why donating blood really is the greatest gift you can give. Thanks for sharing it.

 

www.donateblood.com.au

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Great sentiment Kim.

 

I've donated on and off since I was at school. Of late it seems every time I remember I'm sick and can't donate. Looks like it's time to donate again.

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Ok had me teary.

 

Well done, and hopefully you can encourage others to donate as well.

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We often donate at work when the "bus" comes around. I missed the last one due to sickness (as I was saying before). So I've just looked up my nearest donation centre and it's 28km away. :lol:

 

Don't you think with the need for blood and a city the size of Sydney there could be a donation centre at each major Hospital in the North, South, East and West?

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I found that a really moving post! I'm sure your Dad would have been so proud of you.

 

I used to donate regularly but they don't want my "Pommie" blood anymore! :lol:

Edited by pja

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Trinube,

 

Nothing more powerful than when you overxome your own fears to honour a loved one .... "doing it for Reg" is a fantastic catch cry

 

Cheers

D.

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:lol::lol::D

 

CEM for PJA and I when oh when will they realise that I am not - HOPEFULLY - going to get mad cow disease? I lived in UK in 1980 which was apparently the fearful year, but then I came to Aus in 1980 so do you think that I might develop mad cow by now? I think PJA must also be the same.

 

Well done, Kim, and it is great to do something like that for Reg. I will have to think of something and let you know on 22 and 23 November at Relay for Life Bankstown.

 

Pam

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:lol::lol::D

 

CEM for PJA and I when oh when will they realise that I am not - HOPEFULLY - going to get mad cow disease? I lived in UK in 1980 which was apparently the fearful year, but then I came to Aus in 1980 so do you think that I might develop mad cow by now? I think PJA must also be the same.

Good question. The guidelines followed in Aust for blood collection are developed by the Council of Europe, which specifies the criteria for donor selection. The blood bank simply follows them, which also includes things like what range and nature of lab testing should be done, collection standards, etc. They're very extensive.

 

So it's not "us" who exclude you, but is based on guidelines ensuring the highest quality of blood products across the board, to reduce the risks upon transfusion into patients.

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Good question. The guidelines followed in Aust for blood collection are developed by the Council of Europe, which specifies the criteria for donor selection. The blood bank simply follows them, which also includes things like what range and nature of lab testing should be done, collection standards, etc. They're very extensive.

 

So it's not "us" who exclude you, but is based on guidelines ensuring the highest quality of blood products across the board, to reduce the risks upon transfusion into patients.

 

So where do Britons get their blood from?

 

 

 

( Aussies couldn't handle a pint of full strength anyway :lol: )

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I wish there was a review of the very strict rules around blood donation and an assessment of potential risks to those receiving blood donated products. I see blood donation as a duty and it really gets to me that I had to stop donating when I moved to Australia.

 

Anyone know what the stats are on CJD Variant contamination via donated blood in the UK, US or Europe???

 

If you had a choice of blood donated from someone who just happened to be living in the UK before a random cut off date or no blood at all, would you be happy to receive it???

 

The system also appears somewhat flawed in that my NSW driver’s license has me identified as an organ donor. Preferably I would like to help others survive without popping my clogs.

 

So if you can give blood and don't, get out there and lend a helping hand to people who really need it.

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Thank you, CEM, for that. Having had a very close friend's son who contacted Hep C from blood donation here in Australia I do understand but as FP says where does Britain get its blood or do they take terrible chances? Ian gave 75 donations in his life until they discovered he had lived in UK in 1980 too. It broke his heart as he gave his platelets every other week and all of a sudden they stopped him.

 

By the way the young man who contacted Hep C is now cured. He took the year long experiment and was cured. It was awful to see him with terrible boils on his body, et cetera but he survived and now is cured of that terrible disease and will hopefully live to a ripe old age.

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Well done, Kim, and it is great to do something like that for Reg. I will have to think of something and let you know on 22 and 23 November at Relay for Life Bankstown.

Not on the committee any more but will definitely be there. Might see if I can drum up some Movember support. Staying all night and probably do a late night stint on the bbq.

 

Hey CEM, do Red Cross have any promotional material? Would love to try and push along the cause a bit.

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I wish there was a review of the very strict rules around blood donation and an assessment of potential risks to those receiving blood donated products. I see blood donation as a duty and it really gets to me that I had to stop donating when I moved to Australia.

 

I am glad they are strict on blood guidelines. A relative of mine has had a pretty traumatic upbringing as a result of Hep C infection from donor blood. A haemophiliac, he was infected as an 8 year old via an infected blood transfusion.

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Hey CEM, do Red Cross have any promotional material? Would love to try and push along the cause a bit.

2009 is Year of the Blood Donor, so I know there's a heap of PR activity lined up with that.

 

But in advance / indenpendtly of that your best bet is to call 13 14 95 and/or visit the following web-page which provides some more information: http://www.donateblood.com.au/page.aspx?IDDataTreeMenu=32

 

I hope this helps... Good on you for your energy and motivation.

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I am glad they are strict on blood guidelines. A relative of mine has had a pretty traumatic upbringing as a result of Hep C infection from donor blood. A haemophiliac, he was infected as an 8 year old via an infected blood transfusion.

 

 

In Australia?

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25+ Blood and 30+ plasma Donations here, although not for a long time.

 

Used to work for a large government dept. Started as a way of getting a few hours off. Later saw these people do something else and asked what it was, got told they were donation plasma and that it took longer to do and you could do it more frequently. Great I said more time off :lol:

 

So now I'm a blood and plasma and on the bone marrow donor list. Occasionally I get a call to have some compatibility tests but none have been right to donate to date.

 

Great Story, reminds me to get back into it.

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I am glad they are strict on blood guidelines. A relative of mine has had a pretty traumatic upbringing as a result of Hep C infection from donor blood. A haemophiliac, he was infected as an 8 year old via an infected blood transfusion.

 

 

Not saying there should not be any screening or controls, just that the whole UK Variant CJD thing seems a bit overboard. People still donate blood in the UK and a great many lives are saved in the process. It just seems bizarre that if you visited the UK on 31-12-06 you cannot donate and that if you visited on the 01-01-07 it is ok for you to donate??

 

As far as I am aware it still has to be proven that vCJD can be passed to another person through blood. It is thought that if this is possible, then perhaps it's the bloods white cells that carry the nasties. This is why the UK removes the white blood cells before transfusion.

 

All I'm saying is that the UK seem to be working around this issue and has a history of supplying safe blood to patients in need, so why can't Australia do the same?

 

If you or your child needed a transfusion whilst visiting the UK would you take it?

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Thanks...I never have before (and I am not sure why not )...BUT tomorrow is going to be the day !!

PS....Please remind me and others in 12 months time to again donate !

MOM, good on you, great to hear!! :lol:

 

I genuinely appreciate that some of you might be tempted to donate/re-donate after reading about the 'old man'. He would have been well pleased. :lol:

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Bumping this as for some reason I just remembered I need to donate and now one has opened up in Miranda it's heap easier. Not open today but I'm off tomorrow so will do it then.

 

What about everyone else?

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I was at Miranda the week it opened.

 

So not due again yet.

 

Ring and book in Nealo, its easier.

 

Coffee machine and raisin toast for when you finish.

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'onya nealo, roxii :lol::lol:

 

ironic, got an SMS this morning asking if I could donate

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:lol: Just got home and there is a letter from the blood bank for me saying I am due again in a few weeks.

 

 

Spooooooookyyyyyyyyy!!!!!!!

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:lol: Just got home and there is a letter from the blood bank for me saying I am due again in a few weeks.

 

 

Spooooooookyyyyyyyyy!!!!!!!

thats nucking futs

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ironic, got an SMS this morning asking if I could donate

 

:lol: Just got home and there is a letter from the blood bank for me saying I am due again in a few weeks.

 

Spooooooookyyyyyyyyy!!!!!!!

 

This was not set up.

 

I'm telling you the shooting star was a sign!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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A couple of weeks after IM I donated and the letter arrived last week, so yep, I am up again from this week

 

Do this regularly except a month or so before racing

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Laid my arm out again today - got a nice chocolate heart and a keyring :lol: Season's over now so it's a perfect time to go donate.

 

Give it a shot, someone's life depends on it :lol:

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After I get over the knee op I'm going start doing some Plasma donations. Apparently can give every 2 weeks that way.

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Laid my arm out again today - got a nice chocolate heart and a keyring :lol: Season's over now so it's a perfect time to go donate.

 

Give it a shot, someone's life depends on it :lol:

 

 

Would love to but alas, I lived in the UK for a couple of years and therefore can't. (Have no idea what the Poms do for blood for their blood banks if they're so worried about Mad Cow?)

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After I get over the knee op I'm going start doing some Plasma donations.

Put me down for a high definition 132 cm please :lol::lol: Two weeks for delivery is fine...

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Dredging up this thread as a gentle reminder (I donated again yesterday). I've actually lost count but would probably be up to 8 or 9 times I've gone. If you're overdue or never tried, get yourself along and save a few lives. Had a nice juice and a muffin yesterday but will definitely go the milkshake next time :)

 

It's pre-season ( obligatory tri content to remain in tri chat) so a perfect time to go without affecting your training. And CEM says it's good for you because you build nice new blood!

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Kim, your original post brought me to tears. My Mum was a regular blood donor and encouraged me to do it too. Sadly they don't want my blood, I have Crohn's Disease which is on the banned list. I have registered as an organ donor, if any of them are still worth having.

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Aparently NSW stocks are seriously low, 2 days supply only.

 

Get in and bleed if you can.

 

(Im a few weeks overdue myself, trying to find the time)

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So my excuse was, "I can't get into the city." Read this thread and did some searching. Turns out there is a centre 0.62 km away. Monday.

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So where do Britons get their blood from?

 

 

Well they got their blue blood from the Germans, didn't they? :lol:

 

Nice work Kim. Reminds me that I must get back into semi-regular donations. It's been a while.

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Good stuff buddy.

Haven't given since I got serious about tri.

Anybody here have any idea about how it would work in with training?

I'm just an old fart going around or fun...not racing for sheep stations.

(has put me off the M-dot tattoo thing)...they might put your blood to a different spot

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Just don't do it before a hard session smiffy eat normally and keep you fluids up. If you feel off can the session.

 

Conor

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If you've never donated blood, give it a shot. Be selfless, help others. And if they ask you why you've decided to donate, tell them you're "doing it for Reg". ;)

 

 

I haven't given blood for years - to be honest I really hate doing it - but you've got me with this one. Can't go today, but will head on down on Monday lunch time.

All things considered, to not do so is pretty selfish, really,

 

Can't say it is all that inconvenient, Google reckons the journey from my office by foot is 270 m,3 mins! Do you still get party pies and sausage rolls..?! ;-)

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