Simple Summaries

Giving Blood

Roberta Silman

"Giving Blood" is an excerpt from "Blood Relations"

·       Kathy has leukemia and needs a blood transfusion but there not enough people give blood

·       Anne, Kathy’s mom, goes door to door asking people to donate blood

o  “"My daughter is in the hospital. She needs blood. I was wondering if you could give blood. She has leukemia."”

·       Lois agrees to donate her blood

o  “"Of course I'll give. So will my husband. And I'll call some of my friends. I'm sure they'll help,"”

o  Anne offers to drive her

·      Alexander, the little brother, “went into her bedroom every morning to see if she had come home”

·      “Teddy's a construction worker on the job nearby, he comes every few days to give platelets… about five, a group of friends — all young and in construction. They say they've no money, but lots of blood” – Miss O’Neil the nurse

·      The nurse says of Lois: “"She has very low blood pressure, but since you're driving I let her give. We need whatever we can get, God knows.”

·      “I went back to kiss Kathy good-bye, just to feel her, to see her eyes bright, to know that blood was still moving through her. It was so discouraging at night not to be able to go in and check her, watch her sleep. It's such a unique pleasure — watching your child sleep. Okay, Anne, enough of that, I told myself. Lois looked tired, she had had it.”

·      Lois is pale and “Her hairline was ringed with sweat.”

·      “Lois's eyes told me she wanted us to share the pain we both felt. How could I disappoint her? She, a stranger, who had given blood for my child. But it was too much to ask. My nerves were ragged; I was beginning to get angry”

·      Anne thanks Lois

·      Next day: “Alexander pushed his new toy lawnmower as we walked down another road looking for blood.”