Matt's scripture for the week

Therefore, … whosoever will come may come and partake of the waters of life freely;

Alma 42:27

Saturday, May 18, 2013

CF 4

Dear family and friends,                                                                       15 May 2013

Life is awesome!
I had a great time calling you guys and seeing the whole family! Thanks for trying to use skype to see me and sorry if it didn’t work very well. Mom I hope that you had a wonderful mother’s day!!!!!!  I love you!
I got a call on Tuesday right as we were about to leave and it was the office elders asking me if I could donate blood at the hospital. So I said yes and we went.  Even though we had a lot of people to teach, we went.  We rescheduled our appointments as we went into the city.   I was so, so nervous because I’ve never donated blood before and you know me and blood and guts!  But all in all, I’m glad we went.
When we arrived, there were three other people in line to donate for the same person, but they didn’t qualify because they had been drinking the day before, imagine that! Haha.  How would that be to get a transfusion of 1% or higher alcohol?  Wow!  So they chose me!
I didn’t know the process of giving blood.  Was this some nightmare of exsanguination where I would watch my life empty from me into a series of little bags?! !  Haha.  Well I guess in reality they didn’t suck that much out of me!  Anyway, even though I didn’t know what to expect, I just did what I was told.  I lay down on this contraption and they hooked me up to a machine that separates my blood into red cells, platelets, plasma and cryoprecipitate.  I was told that for every pint of my blood 3 people could be saved.  I laid there with two needles in my arm watching blood go in and out of my body for about an hour and a half ( I don’t remember being very happy about it, haha).  Anyway, the lady that needed the  plasma from my blood came in and sat next to me and thanked me so much for what I was doing ( that was immediate gratification seeing the person that I was helping).
After they finished sucking my blood and (I determined that I was still alive and had not become a zombie, haha), as we were leaving another lady stopped me to say thanks. I was a little unsure about why so I asked her and she told me to follow her.  She led us to where her daughter was.  There were 10 other kids lying in beds alongside her daughter, all with the same sickness.  It is some incurable disease that doesn’t allow them to produce their own blood.  So every day they have to buy blood to have transfused.  I found out that my donation saved them about 100 dollars, and it helped a little girl named Scarlet to be a little bit happier in her life.
But, after we walked into that room with the kids, I didn’t want to leave,  so we stayed there with the kids and their Moms for about 3 hours; coloring, talking and playing with them.  I absolutely loved it! I realized that sometimes we don’t think about (or even know) all that we can do for other people.  We stay within the same limits that we use to define us (our comfort zone) and we don’t stretch ourselves or progress much by doing something so scary but benign as giving blood.  I guess what I’m saying is that we look out for our own benefit, our own interests, time,  etc ., when without too much effort , we can do relatively simple things that will help others.  I can honestly say that when they were taking the blood out I felt so uncomfortable (you know me) and said to myself that I wasn’t going to do this ever again.  But “my eyes of understanding were opened”, and I realized what a difference this “sacrifice” made.  I’ll do it again, whenever they need it! I love living! haha
Service with a smile (albeit an apprehensive one) is so, so rewarding.  I learned a ton externally and internally about something I would never have considered doing before.
I love yall so, so much.  Thanks for being examples in my life and for helping me all the time!!!
misión santiago RD

                                                                         Christopher in Navarette

                                                         Elders being Elders in Navarette

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