Not giving enough blood to keep safe amounts on hand is par for the course around here. If anybody can explain why South Carolinians in the Midlands and Lowcountry (Greenville’s in a separate region) won’t chip in and give on a regular basis, I’d like to hear it. To me, it remains a mystery.
I know why I used to not give — I was scared. But I got over it, because I came to understand how bad the need was. And if I can get over it, you can. I’ve never been as afraid of anything as I was of giving blood. Just typing this paragraph mentioning giving blood would have made me feel faint. I’m still afraid every time I give, but I do it anyway. It’s good to face your fears.
People give in Iraq, and under considerably less comfortable conditions than we have at the local Red Cross (see above, in the Shiite slum of Sadr City in Baghdad). Why do they do that? Because they understand the need. Well, we have a need, too. We should respond to it. You can make an appointment online, or call 1-800-GIVELIFE or, in Columbia, 251-6138.
The Red Cross has extended its hours today, tomorrow and Friday in light of this emergency. Make an appointment and go. Or just go. I’m about to call them myself.