Baby Safety Class

I was pumping my hand into the chest of the dummy kid with purpose and concentration. The instructor gave us a narrative, “Now you hear the sirens…” I was near tears. I was getting so wrapped up in my faux rescue I was nearly shaking.

I was still waiting for the choking talk. It had been 90 minutes since my save a little life class had started, and I was there primarily because of that.

Two weeks ago I was at my mom’s. Rex was on my lap, and my sister Cecily and I were yakking away. Rex was teething on some pizza crust. When he started to choke. Or nearly choke… cough/choke hybrid. Cecily started to push up on his lower belly, I stuck my finger in his throat to make him gag. A combo of the gagging and the coughing produced the pizza crust. They usually get soft in his mouth, but this had a burnt part that baby saliva couldn’t melt.

Rex started crying (a good sign), and I passed him to my sister so I could collapse for a second in hysterics. “He is fine Daphne, he is fine,” Cecily said.

“I know, but I was so scared.” I pulled it together and took Rex to nurse him.

Cecily, always wise, said, “We should take a baby first aid class, because I think what we did was wrong.”

Apparently it was. I learned so much in the class I can’t scratch the surface here. And I’ve taken it twice before. Once in college and once when I was pregnant with Vivien.

THE RULES KEEP CHANGING.

Did you know that beats we are now suppose to perform CPR on adult or child match the beats to the Bee Gee’s “Stayin Alive”? True and ironic.

Did you know that you shouldn’t dial 911 on a cell phone? Can take forever. Landline is better. Or program a local police station into your phone for emergencies.

That your kids should NEVER eat in the car. We heard some scary stories about that. One child who nearly died in his car seat on a piece of chicken (a bystander in the parking lot saved his life) and another child who did die eating a tiny piece of apple in her car seat. There isn’t enough time to react.

And my car has way too many cheerios on the floor anyway.

The instructor said, “Has anyone ever seen a child choke?” I raised my hand.

I told the story and, of course, I started crying. The nice RN teacher came and patted me. Then we went to work tipping the kid over, whacking him on the back. The imaginary grape came out, and all was fine.

I went home and drank wine.