Mother of premature twins thankful for blood donors

Brittany Skeen (KHGI)

Every two seconds, a person in the United States needs blood and according the the American Red Cross.

Now, Red Cross board member, and blood recipient, Brittany Skeen has a deeper understanding of that need when she herself received blood.

Skeen was married and working a busy job when she learned she was pregnant with twins. She said the pregnancy started off great, but things began to change for the worse.

"I ended up being in labor at 34 weeks," said Skeen.

Brittany Skeen had expected to carry her twins full term, but things did not go as expected.

"I kind of had a mental breakdown at that point and said, you know I'm not ready, they're not ready... and one of them has flipped breach," said Skeen.

Skeen had a C–section, giving birth to two healthy boys six weeks early, but Skeen herself was not doing well.

"They got me back to b with the kids and I was just so tired and felt so sick, I had to go back to my room and over the next couple of days I just kept getting sicker and sicker to the point where I couldn't get out of my bed," said Skeen.

Skeen said her hemoglobin had dropped significantly.

"They gave me the option to either get a blood transfusion or to let my body try to build back up my red blood cells naturally which would have taken about six months," said Skeen.

She chose to receive a blood transfusion, which she said was "100 percent the right way to go."

"The process was long but it's great to be able to experience that somebody was able to help me take care of my children because there's no way I could go home in that shape and take care of two small boys," said Skeen.

She has been involved with the American Red Cross for about eight years. Now, she said she has even more appreciation for those who donate.

"I never realized how life changing it could be," said Skeen. "You always think it's one of those things that well, that's never going to happen to me, and once it does you're just so much more thankful that people out there are willing to take time out of their busy schedules and give blood."

The 15th annual NTV News Blood Drive is coming up Monday May 7 from noon until 7 p.m. at the following locations:

YWCA, 211 E. Fonner Park Road, Grand Island

First St. Paul's Lutheran Church, 501 N. Burlington, Hastings

Evangelical Free Church, 4010 7th Avenue, Kearney.

Walk-ins are welcome, but appointments are encouraged. To book yours, simply call 1–800–RED–CROSS or and type sponsor code "NTV" to choose a location and time that works for you.

To follow this story and all of Jessica Stevenson's local news coverage, find her on facebook and twitter.

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