Facing Fears

Donating Blood for the First Time


Submitted Photo

Inside the purple glove that I am holding is a stress ball that I squeeze every ten seconds. I am also drinking my juice to keep me hydrated and energized.

On April 18, I decided to donate blood through the Red Cross. Both of my parents donate their blood every two months, so I decided that I wanted to donate blood to see what it was like. I do not care for needles, but I do not mind them. As a minor, I had to get my parents to consent to donate my blood.
According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), every two seconds someone is in need of a blood transfusion. More than ever blood banks have a lower supply due to concern about COVID-19, but doctors can assure you that COVID-19 cannot be transferred through blood transfusions. American Red Cross says it is important to donate blood because some cancer patients, car accident victims, and people with blood disorders will need blood transfusions daily. These facts motivated me to face my fear of needles and donate blood.
“Until recently I realized how important it is to give blood,” regular blood donor Mrs. Mary Jo Coufal said. “It is something that takes little time to do, but it has a huge impact on different people. Donating blood is just one easy way where I can help the world become a better place.”
I thought people did not give blood because it would take too long or they are scared of needles. I am proud of myself for going through donating blood to experience it for myself and not letting others’ opinions get in my way. If I did not give blood, I would go my whole life thinking that it would be painful and scary. Now that I have actually donated blood, I can tell the world that it is not scary and it is not painful, the one thing that stood out to me the most was how easy it was.

Grace Coufal
This was taken right after I gave blood. The nurse put a red bandage around my vein just in case it started to bleed. After I donated blood I felt normal and healthy.

The nurses that were helping me were so kind and they gave me input on why giving blood is something that every healthy person should do because it especially saves lives. There was a guy donating blood right before me and he was terrified of blood, but he regularly donates it whenever he can. Walking out of the church, I immediately told myself that more people should do it and face their fears. That got me to think that if this twenty-something man can face his fear of blood, just to donate to someone in need, then others can too.
Something that I realized after giving blood was that more people need to do it. It does not hurt and it only takes 30 minutes of your time. I recommend to anyone that is healthy and is eligible to donate blood to do it now. Especially because of the pandemic, there are fewer people donating blood. The big takeaway here is that you cannot judge it until you have tried it.