Hillary’s 35th Birthday Blood Drive

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Donor blood saved my life and now, more than ever, I am wanting to give back and asking you to consider donating blood!

Here’s my story:

In January 2021, Jason and I started our fertility journey. After two rounds of IVF, we successfully found out we were pregnant with a little boy expected to make his debut February 2022. In late November 2021, I started having some bleeding complications and was admitted to the hospital. I would end up staying in the hospital until I delivered the baby. Just as things with my bleeding would get better a new complication would surface and so it was decided that, in the best interest of both baby and I, that we would have a scheduled C-section at exactly 34 weeks.

On January 13, 2022 I had a successful C-section and delivered our baby boy we named Adam. Adam was born weighing 4lbs 14oz. I got to see him for about a minute before the doctors and nurses took him and Jason off to the NICU. Once the C-section was completed, I was moved to the post-op center. This is a standard area that anyone who has a C-section goes to in order to be monitored post surgery. I have absolutely no recollection of what happened after my delivery so this part of my story is all from what the doctors, nurses and Jason told me.

While in post-op I started hemorrhaging. The nurses kept a close eye on it to ensure it wasn’t a crazy amount of blood loose. The bleeding continued on and got progressively worse. Meanwhile, Jason had left the NICU and was escorted back to the post-op to be with me. When he got to my bed, he said I looked like a ghost. He described my face as being as white as a piece of paper and that I looked like my life was being sucked out of me. Jason immediately started freaking out and yelled for the nurses. The nurses then called my doctor who came running in. Due to the increasing amount of blood I was loosing, my doctor performed a procedure on me right then and there in the post-op in an attempt to get the bleeding to stop. The balloon clotting procedure was unsuccessful.

I was then rushed from the post op to the OR. Jason described it as a scene from a TV show where a patient is on the surgical bed and the doctors and nurses are running and pushing the bed in to the OR. I had lost so much blood at this point that the doctor pulled Jason aside and told him that she would do everything she could to keep me alive but that the amount of blood I had lost was so significant that he needed to be prepared for me to not make it.

While in the OR, two Anesthesiologists, two OBs, one Gynecological Oncologist, and about 15 nurses performed life-saving surgery on me. I was in surgery for about 5 hours and survived. I received a hysterectomy where my cervix, uterus, and fallopian tubes were removed. Due to the amount of blood I lost, I was given over 16 bags of blood transfusions which included whole blood, red blood cells, plasma, and blood platelets. I was then in the ICU for three days and was considered critical for 48 hours post surgery. I didn’t get to meet or even hold Adam until he was 3 days old.

If it wasn’t for the selfless act of strangers donating blood, I would not be alive to tell my story. I am told by numerous doctors that what happened to me is incredibly rare and that the complications I originally had that put me in the hospital in the first place had absolutely nothing to do with what happened after my C-Section.

There was a brief period of time where my doctors and husband didn’t know if I would make it, so while turning 35 isn’t as big of a monumental birthday as turning 21 or 50- I am asking for you to consider donating blood on behalf of my 35th birthday.

For years, I’ve always turned down the opportunity to donate blood because “blood and needles creep me out and I don’t do well with them”. You never know when someone you know whether it be a friend, colleague, family member, acquaintance may be in a situation where blood can save there life.

Blood saves lives. Donor blood saved my life. Please sign up to donate blood and please considered forwarding this to all your friends and family in an effort to get as many people as possible to donate blood.

Thanks for reading my story and I hope you’ll consider doing one of the most selfless things you can do and donate blood.