Yesterday afternoon was nothing short of magical. Timmy and I listened and danced to Christmas carols all day while baking cookies. (Okay, I did most of the dancing but since he was strapped to my chest, I will count him as a participant.) By the time Scott and Robby came home, the house was filled with delicious aromas and an abundance of holiday cheer.
Sitting around the dining room table eating dinner, I felt overwhelmed with gratitude and joy. Robby was happily munching on and praising the roasted chicken. Between bites, Scott was talking about plans for the holiday, and Timmy was in his high chair, playing with some Gerber puffs.
Instantly my tranquil moment shattered. Timmy began to cough, and within seconds he was gasping for air. He was drooling prolifically, and suddenly his coloring changed. He turned pink, then red, and then purple. He looked like a little plum! The revelation that he was choking was one of the scariest moments of my life.
Without thinking I scooped him out of his high chair, put his back against my chest and pushed upward on his stomach. At first nothing happened, so I did it again. I have never been so relieved to hear him cough! After a few more gasps for air and coughing, the remnants of a Gerber puff was deposited on my shoulder.
He choked on the food product geared towards a child of both his age and development. The puff canister clearly states that the treat dissolves on contact with the tongue, and are perfect for babies who are new eaters and independent sitters. The stupid puff didn't dissolve, and the results could have been catastrophic.
Timmy had a rough evening after the puff was dislodged. At first he was incredibly lethargic to the point where he couldn't keep his eyes open. Then the vomiting began, forcing him to expel everything that had been in his little tummy. After the vomiting subsided and his hiccups quieted, he returned to being my happy little boy. (Incidentally it was Robby who garnered the first big gummy smile after the incident.)
My mind has been spinning since the incident. Scott and I are both blaming ourselves for providing him with the puffs. Although logically we know that we did nothing wrong (after all, Timmy met all of the criteria for the food), I suppose parents always feel guilty. In addition to the guilt, I have not been able to shake the earth-shattering sense of terror I felt as I watched him struggle to breath. The outcome could have been so different and that has me paralyzed with fear.
I love my boys so much and will always try to keep them safe. Yesterday was an unwelcome reminder that life can change in an instant. I am sure much of today will be spent watching Timmy like a hawk and contacting the Gerber company about their non-dissolving puffs!
- I am a below knee amputee. More importantly, I am also Mommy to two boys, a very active 10 year old (Robby) and an mischievous toddler (Timmy). I have learned that being a parent with a disability can create some unusual and sometimes humorous situations. This blogger is available for hire! Let's talk and learn how a blog can expand your business.