I have now been at this little (well, maybe it’s not so little) project for about a month and a half and we have tackled nine projects. So far, most of my posts and thoughts have focused on my daughter, Abby, and how this is impacting and changing her. It recently struck me that the biggest change so far may actually be in myself.
For several years – probably since around the time I started having children – I have tried to focus more on service. The majority of the time, the ideas never really materialized into much. A few years ago I tried to start a service committee in our age group at church, but after a year it fizzled out. Since that time, I really hadn’t done much in the service area. I would do the yearly angel tree at Christmas and participate in one or two other service projects through the church during the year, but that was about it. Since I have started this project, I can really see a change in how I look at service and how I look for projects. Now I actively search for service projects and, more importantly, when I find something, I actually do it. I have a lot of stressful things going on in my life, but serving others makes me forget about them all. When I serve, I am happy.
The biggest change for me relates to the project I have planned for this Sunday. Believe it or not, I am planning to give blood at the blood drive at our church. This is something I never, in a million years, would have considered before I started this project. Anyone who knows me well knows that my needle phobia borders on the ridiculous. When I started college, I had to get a shot at orientation. Five minutes after the shot, I was pale white and dripping in cold sweat. I ultimately threw up and spent the next six hours in misery. I assumed it was a reaction to the shot. Later that year, I got my ears pierced. Same reaction. Now that I have had several surgeries and two babies, I have had to deal with a fair amount of needles. Through it all, I have discovered that a blood draw is okay, an IV nearly makes me pass out, and an epidural does make me pass out. I have some condition with a fancy medical name I can’t remember where my blood pressure tanks after I am stuck with a needle. It is frustrating and scary.
Last week, as I flipped through the bulletin at church, I saw the ad for next week’s blood drive. I found myself staring at the ad. When I left the church service to go pick up Abby (she can’t sit through the sermon yet, so I get her after), I found myself swinging by the table in the atrium and signing up for the blood drive. I also found myself asking, “What in the world is happening to me? I would NEVER do this!”
This morning, as we were driving to preschool, Abby asked when we could do another project. She went on to say that she wanted to go door to door again and say “Today is National Service Day. Do you have any food for the food pantry?” I explained that we probably would not do that project again for a while, but that we would do other projects. I then told her that I was going to donate blood this weekend. She asked what that meant, and I explained it. She completely flipped out and started crying! She repeatedly said, “No, I don’t like that project! It will hurt!” Even when I explained that she was not going to do it – I was – she kept crying that she did not like the project. I found myself explaining how great it would be to save someone’s life. The more I told her about giving blood, the more excited I got about it. Me – excited about giving blood – who would have ever thought? I did have to promise her that I would come up with another project – a pain-free project – for this weekend in order to get the crying to stop.
This Sunday morning, if you think about it, say a little prayer for me around 8:30 a.m., when I am scheduled to donate blood. Hopefully I will get through this one without incident so that I can continue to happily save lives in the future! And, for those of you that go to King of Glory, please consider joining me and making your own blood donation.