Someone Please Call 911


April 22, 2013 by Katia

Last week 8 Month Old decided it was time to take us to the ER. After a four hour wait he was diagnosed with a temper. D-effing-uh.

6 hours earlier – 7 p.m.

3 Year Old’s Bedroom

Original Life Expectancy Me: common, we have to finish brushing out teeth, rinse, rinse, rinse and spit. Rinse, rinse, rinse and spit (blue birds are circling the air holding 3 Year Old’s cup, fluttering about, as a chipmunk hands him his tooth brush).

Resigned 3 Year Old: mmmmmmmmmmm.

Upstairs (Photo by the lovely Mary Clarke, Lemon Fresh Designs)

(Photo by the lovely Mary Clarke, Lemon Fresh Designs)

In the meantime downstairs darkness is brewing. 8 Month Old’s gotten hold of a flute and he is chewing on it. The Baby Sitter pulls it right out of his mouth. A short but passionate battle ensues and then…

Calm Experienced Mature Babysitter: KATIA, KATIA, CALL 911! KATIA, CALL 911! DANIEL! DANIEL!!!!

New Life Expectancy Me: I’M COMING!!!!!!!!! (pushing 3 Year Old off my lap, water spills out of his mouth, birds escape, chipmunk drinks from the little puddle on the floor, then shamed by bird’s gaze, runs off.)

Downstairs. You listen to me. You want to negotiate? I'll negotiate until I'm blue in the face.

Downstairs. You listen to me. You want to negotiate? I’ll negotiate until I’m blue in the face.

I gallop down the stairs hearing 8 Month Old’s name called out repeatedly and no sound from my baby, carrying rejuvenated 3 Year Old who after the initial scare (3 seconds ago) is now totally psyched to find out what sort of an adventure is unfolding in our living room.

Although still non responsive but definitely awake, 8 Month Old, looking pale and a little blue is sitting in baby sitter’s lap, blankly staring. I call 911 and in response to the customer servicey “what is your emergency today” I bleat “my behehehehehe-beeeeeeeeeeeeeeee” and then have a three way conversation with the Baby Sitter who’s describing how 8 Month Old got very upset, stiffened up and stopped breathing, the person on the phone who says words like seizure and medically curious 3 Year Old who excitedly interrupts me with the polite but insistent “excuse me!” demanding to find out what the Doctor is telling me.

8 Month Old is snapping out of it very quickly. Paramedics show up, 3 Year Old asks why their latexed hands are blue, discusses youghurt and gets a tour of the ambulance. I depart with slightly confused but visibly cheerful and energetic 8 Month Old.

Thursday, just before 1 a.m.

ER Doctor at the Hospital for Sick Children: Some babies just do this, daddy. They get so angry and don’t know how to express it, so they hold their breath until they turn blue. Don’t worry, Daddy, Baby always knows when to stop. It’s not dangerous.

Well, colour me not blue and call me not worried.

When I call 36 Year Old for the 50th time since he replaced me at the hospital he tells me this. So basically it was a decision on his part? I ask for a clarification and get a positive response.

Uhuh, that sounds about right.


Did you ever have to call 911 for your kids?

16 thoughts on “Someone Please Call 911

  1. Thankfully I have not yet, but came close a few months ago when my 3 and 1/2 year cut her chin. It was bleeding so badly I thought for sure stitches and then just like that it clotted and was fine. But still left me shaken and definitely shot after that one!!

    • Katia says:

      Blood freaks me out too. 3 Year Old fell during his first birthday party and couldn’t stop bleeding from his mouth. Apparently there’s lots of blood vessels there so we bleed more profusely. Up till then I was a calm mom, I feel like this was the day I started and never stopped worrying.

  2. My son had a sore throat and fever but refused to let me look at his throat. I couldn’t even get his mouth open at all. The nurse said that if he wouldn’t swallow to bring him in. He wouldn’t take any food or liquids or anything. So in to the ER we went, 3 month old sister in tow.

    They had to hold him down to look in his mouth. Turns out he had strep throat! Poor kid-it’s funny how he will let us know about little things that bother him, but to this day if it’s something major he won’t tell us!

  3. No, I haven’t. But I have called the doctors’ answering service a number of times. My son had a 105 degree temperature this winter, and we nearly went to the ER. That’s so scary for you! My niece does this: holds her breath for extraordinary lengths of time. I wish you calmer evenings from now on!

    • Katia says:

      Yup, I pray for that too, but at least now I know that this might happen. So glad there was someone else in the house with me! As in another grown up.

  4. mysending says:

    Emergencies always happen when you’re exhausted. Hopefully, this will be the worst you ever have to experience. That’s the problem with having kids–you have to be so aware and always on. It’s exhausting in and of itself.

    • Katia says:

      Quite exhausting, I agree. I was thrilled to find out that it was self inflicted and behavioural just as much as I wasn’t. 🙂

  5. mrsdchastain says:

    I have heard of children doing this. Still scary. My friend has been to the ER twice already with her two year old. Both times could have been avoided. Once she needed stitches right above her eye because she was letting her dance (twirl around like a maniac) on the couch, the other because her finger got caught in a ball machine (they had to take the machine apart).

    • Katia says:

      WOW! I’ve been to the ER quite a few times with 3 Year Old,some of it was new parent panic, most of it was weekend and evening emergencies, but this is my first “call 911”. I did call once before when 3 Year Old was a little over 1 and managed to climb out of his crib and fall and we panicked even tough he looked OK, but somehow it was different than hearing someone else call that out to you.

  6. So little one decided to hold his breath until he could get everyone’s attention? Sounds like a good strategy. Wait. Wait……. blue doesn’t look good on me. Hahahaha.

  7. That does not sound fun! Hope you get some rest!!

    • Katia says:

      Thanks, I was a bit shaken up for a couple of days, but we’re doing good now. Think I’ll take him to his doctor just to double check and get a second opinion.

  8. I have not had to call 911 yet, thankfully. However, I freaked out when McKinley got sick (had a fever) for the first time. I probably over-reacted initially– thinking she was dying running around flailing my arms like a wild woman.

    • Katia says:

      Oh yes, I know. It’s terrifying all of these firsts. First high fever, first fall. I hear you. I, too, hope that you never have to call 911!

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