One day –I was around 27- my brother Ali called me.
He had left the tennis club where my dad was playing a double with his friends. It was noon and the sun was at its highest.
– Meryem, Dad had a heart attack.
– What? Is he alive?
My heart paused. The answer didn’t bring it back to normal.
– I’m not sure. You should come. We’re at the hospital.
I told my boss I had to leave. My face was probably that of a zombie because he said yes, worried, without asking why.
In the taxi that was taking me there, my heart beat was as fast as my praying lips.
Every red light, every car blocking the way, every breath hurt.
The sound of an ambulance.
Is it my dad?
No, he’s in the hospital.
So, who is it then?
Whose father? Whose son? Whose mother?
Since that day, when I hear the sound of an ambulance, I can’t just hear another annoying city noise.
Instead, I hear the heart of the person who’s inside.
And that of the people who love them.
This is what I was thinking about yesterday when I donated my blood.
And I realized afterwards I didn’t donate blood to the transparent bag that collected it.
I didn’t pay attention to the needle in my arm or the cold, white and sanitized room around me.
Neither did I hear the sound of the pumping machines.
Yesterday, I gave my blood to someone.
A father. A son. A mother.
And I hope the people they love will have the same privilege as the one I had when I had my dad back on that day.
PS: Dad, if you’re crying, stop it now 🙂
WHY IS IT SELF-CARE? Donating blood can help save lives. Knowing that you can be part of this is gratifying and highly rewarding.
MORE ABOUT THIS
The most important thing to do when you donate blood is to eat, drink well and have take care of yourself. Before and after.
Your body will have to produce red cells to reconstitute the blood you’ve donated.
Eat foods rich in iron : lentils, red meats, fish, beans, kale, wheat products, dried fruits and nuts.
Drink plenty of fluid, more than your usual intake.
Dizziness is normal after giving blood. Sit, relax and get rest.