Yesterday I was supposed to donate blood, for the first time. I haven’t been able to before due to the kind of lifestyle I’ve led, which has actually weighed quite heavily on me. Being able to donate blood was something that I was really excited about and looking forward to, especially with my niece battling leukemia. While other family members have been proudly posting pictures with the hashtag #bloodforniecesname as they’re sitting in the blood donor chair, I have been slowly working towards that goal for myself. 2017, the year of family for me, what a GREAT way to start it off! I made my appointment, I confirmed my appointment via phone a few days before, I made my way to the blood donor clinic after work and waited the half hour til my appointment. I signed in and went to the computer to answer the myriad of questions that a first time donor has to answer, I waited in the waiting area for half an hour waiting to go through the screening process. Once in there, I answered all the questions and confirmed all my personal information. The lady said “Oh, I see that you answered yes to having traveled outside of Canada during the past 12 months. Where did you travel to?” I answered with “Mexico and Texas”. “Well, we’re not worried about TEXAS, but where in Mexico?” I told her and she looked it up in her binder and low and behold, the little area that I traveled to in Mexico last April was under Malaria warning. No one who has visited there is allowed to donate blood for one year after their arrival back on Canadian soil. And that was that. Declined. “Can’t you test…?” nope. “We look forward to seeing you in May!” she cheerfully said as she shooed me out so that I could do my walk of shame through the people sitting in the waiting area for screening (that small town will probably now be all aflutter with the rumour that I got declined because I have syphilis or something). What makes me the most disgruntled about this is that I live in an area that is high risk for West Nile Virus, and people can carry that around unknowingly for years, AND it can be fatal to people over 50! Malaria.. well I think you know you have that well before a year is up. *sigh* I just wanted to do a good deed, but I guess that that particular one will have to wait now until May.