Blood Recipient Stories
People Like Me
I was born with Von Willebrand's Disease- a bleeding disorder very similar to hemophilia, but different in that it occurs in males and females. All my life I have struggled with intense bruising, spontaneous nosebleeds, and month-long menstruation. The several times I have had surgery or internal hemorrhaging (which sometimes occurs with the flu or if I am on too much medication), I have recieved blood product like Humate. I have been lucky enough to not need a transfusion, but the blood product I recieve comes from donor blood. I make a point to thank donors whenever I see the Red Cross set up because I know that their blood is going to people like me.
Your Blood Saved Me
by Eric C.
I am grateful for ALL who have ever given blood. As a boy I was diagnosed with a rare type of anemia called Diamond Black Fan Syndrome. I started receiving blood from the very beginning and every time after my CBC count was normal as was my energy. The one and only drawback was I was receiving one every month on average. Then seeking a longer term solution I was given every pill starting in 2nd grade, none of which helped. The steroids had me gain weight to where in 4th grade I was over 100 pounds. Finally as a family we decided going to visit UCLA once a month was best scenario, has a very good pediatric wing. Blood helped me to see these other children who had months to live and nothing but a smile on their faces, most faces at least. It showed me I had it good in some cases, my father and I often looked to see where the blood originated from and tried to imagine what selfless person donated a part of their life,time, and effort for a stranger. Then once a month turned to two, then three. Next I was only receiving blood twice a year maybe three until I had my last bags of blood donated, always as a precautionary before leaving for a family trip. Blood from someone I did not know but am so grateful for allowed me to visit Washington D.C. A trip I will never forget. Flying out of Baltimore we did some sightseeing like Babe Ruth's house and Manning museum before it burned down years later. Then as a catholic of faith we visited Saint Jude Shrine, my Saint name and the saint I wore around my neck since my birth. We said some prayers as a family and I thanked God and St. Jude for always being there. Those 2 bags I received before the trip were my last, I was 13. I am now 24 with a condition I share with less than thousand people around the world, a condition in which the life expectancy is 4-6 years of age. I am alive because of The Red Cross and the unimaginable number of people who have given blood since the very first donor, I thank you ,love you, and may God bless you all.
The Gift That Really Means Something
On May third, 2012, I was blessed with the birth of my second little girl, Cambrie. What should have been one of the best days of my life, turned out to be the scariest...
Shortly after she was born, I sensed that something just wasn’t right. The doctor informed me that she was having a hard time getting the bleeding to slow down. My uterus was not contracting efficiently enough, causing primary postpartum hemorrhaging. I was losing significant amounts of blood over a short amount of time. My physician tried everything she could but nothing seemed to work.
Before I had even seen her, Cambrie was taken from me, and I was surrounded by nurses, being rushed to the operating room. In that moment, all I could think about was my family. I couldn’t imagine the girls growing up without their Mom, and so I began to pray. I could hear the nurses praying, and my family too…
Next thing I knew I was waking up in the recovery room with my husband by my side. An emergency hysterectomy had been performed, without which I would certainly have died, as the blood loss was great. Immediately, I was given a transfusion, and would require several more over the next couple of days.
As a healthcare professional, I had often heard about ‘the gift that really means something’ and ‘give blood; save lives’, but today I truly thank God for those people who gave their blood to save MY life! Had it not been for immediate availability of my rare blood type, I would not be here today to experience and enjoy life with my family.
Donors have saved my life and the life of my loved ones
by Noel France
I was eleven years old when I had my tonsils out,simple operation huh? well i hemorraged 3 times. I received three blood transfusions, thank you to all the donors who were ther to save me!!!! Now I have a friend who is fighting cancer and has received red cell and platelets.Thank you donors for giving her each new day!!!
Wow, how quickly things can change. I went from a healthy 63 year old to a man fighting for his life in February of this year. I was diagnosed with ITP, a blood clotting disorder. I received 50 units of blood during my 1-month hospital stay.......I am forever grateful that the platelets and whole blood were available to me. My family and I recently hosted a blood drive in our small, rural town and produced 71 units of blood! I encourage anyone that is able to give back to do so if they can. We are truly grateful for what we received.....Thankyou American Red Cross.
I got a new life
When major health problems made surgery dangerous until absolutely necessary, 27 pints of another's blood kept me alive. After a transfusion, I was so anemic before each transfusion that I couldn't walk up stairs because of lack of oxygen. My brain, which had just finished a PHD, was suddenly gone. When I finally bled out - donor blood let me survive the surgery. This summer, I climbed to a 10,000 foot snow line and got half way through my book- and thanked those who had let me rejoin my life every step of the way, every word I wrote. Thank you..
My baby girl has her mommy!
Thanks to your wonderful organization and the generosity of blood donors, I'm able to share my story and raise my beautiful baby girl. January 11, 2012 is a bittersweet day for me ... it's the day that I became a mom, but it's also the day that I almost lost my life and the ability to ever carry children again. After a wonderful pregnancy and relatively seamless delivery, I was rushed to emergency surgery because of a hemorrhage. During nearly six hours of surgery, three surgeons worked diligently to stop the bleeding. At one point, the hospital chaplain was called to sit with my family after they were told that I probably wouldn't make it. As the last (and only) option to save my life, the doctors removed my uterus. I spent three days in the Intensive Care Unit before returning to my baby girl in the Maternity Center. During the course of my operation, I received 15 units of blood, 12 units of frozen plasma, and a 3-pack of platelets. Through research and conversations with my doctors, I now understand the rarity and serious nature of my blood transfusion. While I believe in miracles, I also believe that I'm here today because of the skilled medical professionals and gracious blood donors that saved my life. As we get ready to celebrate all that we're thankful for, I can't help but tear up when I think of how grateful and thankful I am for the blood donors who volunteered their time to give the gift of life. Since my transfusion, I have become an advocate for blood donations and drives. Next month, my company will host its second blood drive at our office, and I've also shared my story on local news stations to suppord Blood Donor Drives. I hope that my story will inspire and educate people on the importance of blood donation, which will ultimately save lives (like mine!). My family and I are forever grateful. If my daughter could talk, she'd say "Thank You!"
Without donors, my brother, sister and I wouldn't be alive today.
Having a genetic blood disorder the three of us require blood product to stop any bleed we have, including something as simple as a nosebleed. For us it could last 12 hours without the help of medicine which is comprised of blood product. Knowing we have this makes us know there's always a chance to have complications and bleed out. I remember having my menstrual cycle for 2 months straight. I was in college and took finals early to go home for a scheduled blood transfusion since I had lost too much blood. I then went home, the night before my scheduled transfusion the last thing I remember was standing up to greet my brother. I woke up in an ambulance. I had passed out, my brother caught me and I was being rushed to the hospital. Waking up I saw my brothers girlfriend, my mom was too upset to drive so my brother was with her driving behind the ambulance. Being me, I made jokes but inside I knew I was in trouble... I knew I had never felt like this it was hard to stay awake. I received 4 pints of blood and physically couldn't keep my eyes open until I had 2 pints of blood in. Without the generous donations from people I know I would have died that night. And everytime I bleed I thank all donors because those platelets save my life monthly. Without donors I don't know what my life would be...my entire family thanks each and every person who donates. It's the easiest thing a person can do that means saving a life!!
Blood Donations Saved My Life
In the month of October in 2006 I had abdominal surgery. I went home the next day to recover. I am a red head and I've always heard that red heads have a problem with blood not clotting as easily as others do. I remember me being home and feeling dizzy. My husband had to keep changing the bandages because they kept getting drenched in blood. This went on for almost a week...I was to the point that my gums were the same color as my teeth...my heart rate was 130 and I felt anxious with a sense of impending doom. At 3:00 am one morning I was woken up with such a feeling of dread.. something told me to go to the ER. I didn't wake up anyone (now I know how stupid that was), I just walked slowly to the car and made the 3 mile drive to the hospital. In triage an alarm went off during the O2 and heart rate check..the alarm sensor said "weak pulse". They got some blood work to see what was going on.. in 20 minutes there was the most awful sounding telephone ring..it was the lab and the doctor said it rings like that when they get a critical result, but in my case they had made a mistake and had to get another sample because according to the results I would not even be conscious if it were right. So, they took more blood and sent it to the Lab. In 15 minutes I heard the same horrible sounding telephone ring.. I knew in my heart I was in trouble... the doctor came around the corner, and into my room with a scared look on his face and told me the results were right. My hemoglobin was 4.2 and my hematocrit was 12.8. I was on the verge of dying. The doctor said I needed a blood transfusion immediately...I figured it was time I called my husband, so I did. When he answered he didn't even know I was gone from the house... after his initial shock of me being in the hospital he was there in 15 minutes. When the doctor came in I told him that I wanted my husband's blood because we had the same type. He looked at us and said "but that's a 3 day turn around time", he said "You don't have 3 days"... within 2 hours I was getting my first unit of blood. I ended up getting 5 units of blood...I am so thankful to the people that gave their time and blood to help people like me. If it had not been for the blood I received that day, my children would be without a mother, my parents without a daughter, and the medical field without one more nurse. I am proud to be able to say thank you AND be in a position that I can help others in the same situation.
It saved my life
In march of 2011 I was having a normal day. Cleaning the yard playing with my child until i felt something inside of me cramp up and began to feel a small gush of something. I immediately ran inside and of course instantly sat on the toilet. I waited a few minutes but the blood just began to get stronger. My husband had me rush to the ER. At that time we only lived about 5 minutes driving from the Hospital closest to us. By the time those 5 minutes went by my entire lower body was saturated with blood. I walked into the ER crying and they immediately took me in. I waited a long time and was hemmoraging losing so much blood. They couldnt get it to stop. I remember lastly passing out and even the nurses were afraid I wasnt going to make it. I had to get 3 bags of blood. That literally saved my life that day. If it wasnt for amazing donors I would not be alive today to help others as those have helped me or spread the word of donation. I wouldnt be able to watch my amazing son grow up. Thank you so much for your donations.