Monday, April 30, 2007

Blood Donation: 0 for 3

I tried to donate blood today. If you don't know, it's a really big deal for me to try to donate. I have a bad history of shot and blood-drawing fainting episodes for whatever reason. Yes, I have to lay down to get my flu shot every year. Yes, I know this makes me a wimp.

But it just so happens that I married a wonderful man who, in addition to all the other altruistic and amazing things he does, believes very strongly in donating blood regularly. He's been asking me to come donate with him since we met. Today it finally worked in my schedule and so I said I'd go with him.

Now I've tried to donate blood in the past. After 9/11 happened I waited for hours to donate, just to be told that a medication I was on made me ineligible, or at least made blood donation inadvisable. I tried again two years ago after my regime of allergy shots made me more comfortable with needles in general, but was anemic.

So I geared myself up for donation today. I've been thinking about it and trying to re-frame it as a positive experience all morning. I drank lots of water yesterday, ate leafy greens and meat, and even felt enthusiastic about the process. I did the finger-prick with no problem. It was super easy! And my finger even bled, which is not a sure-thing for me generally speaking. They had a new machine that was more accurate in its estimation of iron in the blood, so I was hopeful that it would show that I was slightly over the minimum of iron instead of slightly under.

Yeah, no.

So, once again, I have been thwarted. Maybe I'll pick up some iron pills on the way home tonight and try again in a few days. At least I tried, right?


Friday, April 20, 2007

This afternoon Lola was put to sleep. Her Wobbly Hedgehog Syndrome had progressed to the point that she could no longer eat or drink on her own. It hurts a lot to say goodbye, but I have no doubt that it was the right thing to do.

This is the first time I've lost a hedgehog without another one here at home waiting for me. It feels very empty without her. It will be a while before that emptiness fades.

In honor of Lola and her beautifully trouble-making life, I've come up with some Life Lessons according to Lola:
Lola's Life Lessons:
Even cranks can come around with enough time and patience.
Always look for interesting stuff.
You can enjoy things more when you feel safe.
There are very few things a blanket and snuggle won't fix.
Baths may be evil, but it's nice to smell good.
If you beg you get more of what you want.
Don't think so much; just be present.
Always be on your best behavior for strangers.
If something smells good, dive right in.
Just because there's no way out, doesn't mean you shouldn't go in anyway.
The funnest things are the things you're not supposed to be doing.
Approach every day and every obstacle with a sense of fun and adventure.
Sometimes even the best of us just needs to nap.
Friends share troubles and heartaches.
If you're uncomfortable, DO something about it.
Never doubt your capacity to love and heal.
Don't be afraid when it's time to go; death is just a new adventure!

Thank you for the honor of being your human companion, Lola. You have been a wonderful teacher.


Monday, April 16, 2007

I'm Married :)

Mike and I tied the knot this weekend. Don't worry, the wedding is still on for September. This was primarily for practical reasons such as health insurance and name-changing issues. I have to say, though, that it was just perfect and I'm so glad we did it. :) Our families were together for the first time, and really seemed to get along. All those who will be in the wedding party were there. We had a very short, small, intimate ceremony that was full of emotion and meaning without being fussy and stressful. It was amazing to have the opportunity to declare my devotion for my husband before those who love us most. It was beautiful and relaxed and fun!

My name will officially be changing. I'll take Mike's last name and add it to the end of mine, no hyphen. I will probably use his name socially, and use the full name professionally. Now I just have to change my driver's license, my social security card, bank account names, insurance names, the name listed for me with the University... I think getting married was the easy part!

Actually, that's one thing we both felt: "Wow, that was really easy." That's how the beginning of our married life together should begin. I'm so glad it has. :)