Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Are You Choking?

While we were out and about the other day we stopped in one of our favorite local restaurants for a bite to eat. While we were eating Summer noticed the CPR poster on the wall to the entrance of the kitchen area.

Her question to us was "Why do they have a picture of a man choking another man on the wall?" At first Toby and I had no idea what she was talking about. We then noticed the CPR poster. Sadly, this would be the first time we ever spoke to her about CPR or the Heimlich.

It got me to thinking about CPR in general. I have never managed to take a CPR course and have always told anyone who even remotely sounded as if they are beginning to choke on a morsel "Don't choke 'cause I don't know CPR and you will just have to die."

This leads me to the story that Toby reminded me of while discussing CPR to Summer.

My ex-husband Frank and I had civil relations after our divorce. One 4th of July a couple of years ago, Frank's wife was out of town and he was over helping Lucas work on his car. We invited him to stay and eat our 4th of July spread with us. He obliged. Frank was never one to turn down food invitations of any kind.

There were a couple of other people over too...I don't even remember who. As we were all sitting around eating and engaging in our chatter, I noticed Frank looking a little stressed in the face. He appeared to be choking. I watched him a few more seconds before I asked him if he was o.k. He shook his head no.

Knowing my expertise in the Heimlich's Maneuver I immediately panicked and alerted Toby and Lucas of the situation. All I could say was "Lucas do something your father is choking!" Lucas seemed to be as stunned as I was as his father was beginning to turn blue.

Thank goodness for Toby who had already thought quick enough to grab a chair to stand on so that he would be tall enough to grab my 6'2" ex-husband around the waist and perform the needed thrust.

In the end Frank managed to eventually dislodge the piece of meat himself. He coughed it up into the air a few feet, recovered a few seconds and went right back to eating as if nothing had happened.

It was one of those things that you talk about now and laugh but at the time it happened it was pretty scary.

So, I have decided the next time I see a CPR course offered, Summer and I both are going to enroll in the class. You just never know when you might need it.......

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