On Thursday we had a blood drive at school. I donate blood every time Carter Blood Care comes ot my school for the following reasons:
Despite the fact that it’s disgusting, it takes very little effort on the donors part.
Only 38% of the US is eligible to donate blood.
Only 8% of these eligible Americans have ever donated blood.
Someone in America needs a blood transfusion every 2 seconds.
This is the one that really gets me:
Each blood donation saves 3 lives.
The first time I donated blood, it was mostly to see if I could stand it. Because I thought it was a challenge. Because I felt like a loser for being excused from biology labs because of my quesiness.
Then as the woman wrapped my arm, she said “You saved three lives today.”
If taking deep breaths for ten minutes can save three lives, then how could you pass up an oppurtunity to do so?
But I digress, I am at the blood drive.
Whenever you get done donating blood, they give you a powerade and some cookies. To keep you from getting light headed and passing out. I think. Not sure why it is. But it is a really good feeling to sit there, wearing your blue bandage of courage, having people watching over you to make sure you’re okay, and eating cookies. I feel like the getting taken care of and eating cookies is the most pleasant part of the experience.
That night, I went to a memorial service at Epworth UMC. Afterwards, there was a reception in the Family Life Center where everyopne was ordered to eat at least three cookies. Because we had a. lot. of. cookies. All the members of the congregation, family, friends, everyone made cookies for days. And after deep breaths for a while. And some pain. They fed everyone cookies and took care of them. And that’s a good feeling.
We all want to DO something. We don’t want to sign a card, we don’t want to just sit and watch our friends and family hurt. We want to feed them cookies and take care of them. This is why i am thinking about cookies on All Saints Day. Because Saints are the ones who feed us cookies and take care of us.
At some point, everybody is taken care of and is taking care of someone else. Say whatever you want about my trying to be universal or my optimism in this, but I don’t see how it could not be true. Every one takes care of someone else and is taken care of by someone else, because we are in constant interaction and relationship with each other.
Sometimes it’s really hard though. We do care about each other, but don’t understand how to show it. We don’t see the best way to take care of each other, to love each other, to be Saints. And so we make cookies. If the best way someone has to show you how much they care and that they are there for you and that they just want you to feel loved and to be happy again is to feed you cookies, then what’s wrong with that? Sometimes cookies are the best we can do. And I think that that’s good enough for me. Because of the sentiment behind it. If the past few weeks are any indication of what life in general will be like for all of us, I am certain of only one thing and that’s that we will constantly be making and feeding each other metaphorical cookies. And that those cookies are going to say more than “let’s cross our fingers to avoid childhood diabetes and obesity” and they’re going to say more than “Hope this helps the medicine go down” they’re going to say “I understand your pain. and I wish I could take it away entirely, but I can’t. But I still love you and I’m going to do my best to take care of you.”
A cookie is a promise. Not just a random act of kindness. A cookie tells you that as soon as I find out what you need me to do, I’m going to do it, but until then i’m going to shower you in the most random expressions of love as they pop into my head and into my heart. I will bake you cookies, I will pick up your kids from daycare, I will check the oil in your car, I will change your air filters, I will water the plants, I will bake you cookies, i will bake you cookies, I will bake you cookies until I find something better to do.
And although cookies are not a necessity to life or a great grief-easer, they say a lot. And although many of these circles of love will be underestimated as merely a baked good, they all are a promise.
We are going to be taking care of each other all our lives. We are going to love each other, worry about each other, look after each other, and bake lots and lots of cookies for each other. And a cookie might not seem like much, but it’s good enough for me.