I just want people to think I’m good. And a T-shirt.

20170128_114313.jpgToday, I found myself at the Crowley Health Fair in Crowley, Texas.   My motivations were purely selfish.  I wanted free stuff.  I like seeing what’s out there in the health and wellness arena, and I wanted an adjustment from a chiropractor.  (the jury’s still out on that, I spent 46 years calling them “quackopractors” and have some skepticism and anxiety around the entire profession, but that’s another post).

Among the essential oils, personal trainers, fake foods/supplements, and other stuff, there was the CARTER BLOOD BUS.

I have given blood ONCE in my life.  It was in high school.  There was peer pressure involved.  TWO of my dance team friends who also tried to donate that day were denied. “Too skinny” to safely donate blood.  I have often wished to be thinner in my life, but NEVER as much as on that bloody Monday at Clackamas High School.  Alas, I do believe the phlebotomist could have safely pumped from both of my hearty arms with no ill effects.

Fast forward nearly 30 years.  Crowley, Texas.  Donate blood.  AND:  GET A FREE T SHIRT.  So, I get to look altruistic, cool, and magnanimous, and can wear that t shirt as proof.  I mean, really, IMAGINE the Facebook “likes” and blogpost fame.  Side note, I don’t like needles in my veins.  It creeps me out.

My story, in bullet list format.

  • get on bus
  • read information and complete consent forms
  • get finger prick and iron tested.  (low, but acceptable)
  • get water and get on table
  • put in headphones, start up a relaxing pod cast and put out my arm
  • breathe
  • huge needle
  • big stick
  • then, “ooh, well” from the phlebotomist
  • huge needle being wiggled in and out of my vein
  • me starting to panic.  breathing not going well
  • me:  “is it working?”
  • her:  “no”
  • water spilling all over my lap
  • i look like i wet my pants
  • i spill water all over the bus
  • i flee the bus, leaving all of my earthly possessions behind
  • i return to the bus in shame, since i have no car keys
  • me crying in the car on the drive home (tears of frustration and embarassment)
  • me calling myself a nancy and feeling like a complete weenie failure
  • no t shirt
  • I did NOT “save three lives” (which is what I was informed my donation would do)

What are our takeaways?

  • I’m so not cool or good or altruistic or magnanimous
  • I just wanted a t shirt
  • t shirts are NOT a good reason to take action

In all seriousness, the takeaway here:

There are many many paths to goodness in this world.  Mine is not yours, nor vice versa.  In EVERY activity, experience, career, family, or life choice, there is an opportunity to be a selfish-asshole, or an equal opportunity to be an amazing rockstar of a human being.  It’s all about motivation and choice.

Today, EVEN if I HAD been successful in donating blood, my heart and motivations were all about appearances.  I suppose there’s a reason we are admonished to “pray in our closets“.  On the flip side of that, there have been times in my life, when my motivations were pure, but I still fucked things up.  Happens.  Thankfully, at the end of the day, God looks at my heart.  And aside from the occasional selfish t-shirt debacle, my heart’s ok.

Light and Love,

Big (baby) Laura

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