Friday, August 27, 2010

The Weight of a Mother's Love

Today I officially have gained the understanding of what it is to be a mom. While out shopping this afternoon Elle choked on one of her crackers. I have to tell the whole story, just to get it out, so that I can process and move on. It was probably the scariest moment of my life.
Bryan, Elle, and I were in the dressing room. We had been giving Elle her puffs and some small crackers to munch on while we got dressed. I walked out to look in the mirror and she began to cry, wanting to walk out with me. Bryan held her in the room, I came back, she began to walk towards me and then started to cough. I patted her back and let her cough but she kept coughing. The cough began to get worse, turning into more of a gagging, and that's when I panicked. I picked her up, when to Bryan and said, she's choking. He took her and knew exactly what to do. Mouth sweeps, put her on her belly at a downward angle, etc. I, on the other hand, began to have a meltdown. I started to shake, cry, I was telling him we needed to call 911 (she was still crying/coughing) and, on top of dealing with the baby, Bryan kept assuring me that she was ok because she was making noise. He then did another sweep, really stuck his finger down her throat, felt the cracker, and was able to push it down. She made a gagging sound, and then, once he was sure it was through, he sat her up. I was still not ok. I began to cry even harder. The sense of not being able to help her was too much. The feeling of complete and utter helplessness was too heavy. How do mothers who have lost children do it? How do mothers who have sick babies do it? The strength they have is amazing.
After it was over with, I became very disappointed in myself. What would have happened if Bryan wasn't there? Would I have known what to do? I knew to do mouth sweeps, but that was it. I pretty much grazed over the rest of the information we learned regarding infant CPR.

I looked up infant choking procedure on WebMDs website. It's not as thorough as I'd like, but I now have a better understanding and handle on how to deal with this situation if I am ever faced with it again.

Phew. I am exhausted.

Hug your babies.

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