For the last 2 years, I've tried to get a photo of a crow, but they don't sit still long enough around here to let that happen. But on Thanksgiving Day, as gray as it was, I did it! Not perfect, but I'll take it. As grateful as I am for that picture, that's not what 'm writing about. It's about showing gratitude and paying it forward, which just happened to be Crusade #22 on Michelle Ward's other site, the Street Team Challenge. I remember reading about it when it was posted, but found it almost overwhelming. So very many people have always been so good to me, and I have some really special friends that have always gone above & beyond-how do you even begin to meet that challenge of finding something that huge to do something that would properly pay it forward? Today I finally figured it out, and it's something you all could do, and I'd be thrilled if you all would join me in this one, it's quick & simple-donate blood to your local Red Cross. I had to go there today to donate blood for myself in case I need a transfusion for my surgery coming up, and while I was sitting there it hit me that it's the perfect thing to do to pay it forward to everyone. The Red Cross is there to help everyone, and if you ever needed blood, I'd be willing to bet that you'd be thrilled to have access to some. Here's a few facts, courtesy of Red Cross. Did you know that if your blood type is A, it could potentially be transfused to anyone needing platelets, regardless of their blood type? Most patients undergoing bone marrow transplant, chemotherapy, organ transplant or radiation rely on platelet transfusions to survive. O Negative red cells could be transfused to 100% of the population. O Positive red cells could be transfused to anyone with a positive blood type, about 85% of the population. Those with AB blood type, the plasma in your blood could be transfused into any patient regardless of blood type (used to treat patients recovering from liver transplants or trauma), and the platelets can also be transfused to infants & children. And finally Type B donors can donate platelets using a apheresis process which allows you to donate that part of your blood up to 24 times/year or alternate between that & whole blood donations. Cancer patients rely on these platelets as their defense against excessive bleeding. It's amazing how taking a little time to donate blood could potentially help so many people, it's something that I was totally oblivious to, or just never thought about, not sure on that one yet. At any rate, both Gary & I are going to make the commitment to donate as soon as I get the all clear signal from the doc that I can do so. And it's going to feel good, knowing that it could help make someone's life just a little better. Anyone care to join us?
While we're on the subject of Michelle's crusades, surgery & such, I've been trying hard to avoid her Crusade #24 , Final Wishes, but it's time I met it head on. I've struggled with this one, thought about it for a very long time, refused to deal with it simply because it's something I don't want to deal with! But there's no time like the present, and it's in the back of my mind anyway, so I may as well just spit it out and get on with it. As I've mentioned before, on Dec. 17, I'm having a hip replacement, a simple, done everyday, kind of surgery. Except when I had my first one done 8 years ago, something went horribly wrong with the anaesthsia, I went into cardiac arrest, spent a few days in CCU, then went back the next week & had an uneventful, but successful, surgery. When I woke up, I thought it was a couple of hours after they sedated me & expected a leg that hurt like hell. Instead, I woke up 3 or 4 days later with a sore chest from them beating on me & wrists that were sore from being in restraints & me fighting it. Now I do know that the chances of that happening to the same person twice, have to be smaller than getting hit by lightening while sitting on the couch watching TV, but it did happen once, so I know all too well that it's not impossible. So, I'll write out my wishes, short & sweet, and leave a note on my studio table where to find them in case I'm not coming home. But for the record, I have every intention of coming home, so if I find the seal broken on that envelope from someone peeking, there'll be hell to pay:) On a brighter note, are you all still celebrating and lighting candles? I have been, and I'll share more about that tomorrow, I seem to have written a short novel here today! But I'll leave you with something to celebrate, even a rotten apple can look good with the right photographer, and you all know that's not me:) Gary's back up walking around & snapping pictures-yay!!