After donating for years, suddenly it was me in need
I BECAME a blood donor at the age of 16 when my high school, Caloundra State, had the blood donor caravan come to visit.
I donated blood regularly throughout the years and became a plasma donor in my early 20s.
I joined the Blood Service as a community relations officer seven years ago. My role is to help educate the community about the need for blood donations and encourage people to become blood donors.
It wasn't until after I'd reached my 123rd blood donation that I became a recipient of a very special blood product, made from plasma and called Anti-D.
I had a miscarriage before I became pregnant with Isla and because my blood type is B negative and my partner is O positive, there is always a possibility our child will be born with a positive blood group.
With a miscarriage, and also childbirth, comes the possibility of negative and positive blood crossing paths and creating antibodies in my blood that will attack any future pregnancies and may result in more miscarriages, stillbirth and other issues.
Hence, the amazing Anti-D product, which donors like James give.
In total I have received four doses of Anti-D. One after my miscarriage, two while I was pregnant with Isla (at 28 and 32 weeks) and the fourth a few days after she was born.
If I could encourage one thing from my experience it would be for people to take a leap and start a lifetime of lifesaving work by becoming a donor. You never know when it may be you or a loved one who will need it.
Isla and I are living proof.
If you can't donate, encourage and support someone who can. We need new donors every day on the Sunshine Coast.
- REBECCA IND
Blood Service community relations officer