Heimlich. Learn it. If you have ever played with kids, babysat, birthed kids, seen kids in the park, if you know what a kid is... learn it. I have used it no less than 5 times.
Today was the worst one.
I don't let my kids eat in the car, much less candy. I can't turn around to get them if they start coughing without wrecking and killing us all, so no. When my 6 year old handed my 4 year old a hard peppermint on the way out of Vacation Bible School, he asked if they could eat it yet. I told them absolutely not in the car, but if they would wait until the water park, then they could eat it before getting into the water. No complaints at all. They know my rules. They have both also almost died from choking before. The first time was here... AWFUL! Since then we have choked on kale, hotdogs, and clover to name a few. The clover wasn't even my kid, but I snatched him up and somehow got it out.
We are walking from one side of the water park to the other to get to the wave pool and I am dragging the little one along, trying to keep up with the big one and then the little one STOPS. I look at her and her eyes are drifting off and the hand I had been holding moves to her chest. I tried to get eye contact, but she just kept opening her mouth.
Then I stepped out of my body and watched myself ball up my fist and, since she is so tiny, I had her whole body weight pressing down on my fists while I bounced her especially hard onto my fists. Up and down a full 3 times. I have no idea when I realized what I was doing was actually me and not just me seeing myself do it... I just knew I was doing it... but I felt like I was watching myself. That image is strangely ingrained even though I know it was not a real image.
It felt like an eternity and I didn't know if I was doing it right or not. I just kept wondering why no one was running over to help. I had tunnel vision and I think the 6 year old was walking in circles around us. I looked up to see a table with 3 teenage girls watching... but no adults or (Heaven forbid) lifeguard rushing over.
I later asked my son and he said that no one looked over other than a little girl that was walking by.
I set my baby girl down and turned her towards me, she was still coughing and crying. Thank God she was crying... she was breathing. Cry away. We hugged. I figured it had gone past her windpipe. Then she started gagging again and coughing and I thought for sure it would get caught again. Instead she threw it up into her mouth and I almost lost it again. I reached for it and leaned her forward and then she spit it (and a lot of gunk) into my hand.
Of course the 6 year old old was like, "ew gross... do you see what she just did?" I threw it in the nearby trash and still no one stopped or looked or asked if everything was OK. I must have sat there hugging her for 5 minutes while she wept and tears drizzled down my cheek. I was shaky and suddenly drenched in sweat, but so happy that she was OK. I saved her life. What if I hadn't known what to do or where to press? I wouldn't be sitting right here typing, that is for sure.
|This was taken after leaving the wavepool... |
so about 45 minutes after nearly dying.
American Red Cross