What would you do? #firstaid #savealife

What would you do if your child started to choke?....seriously would you know what to do? Maybe your thinking "Well I just would or I'm sure someone around would help"....what if your alone?

Now I've been in this situation 3 times with my boys, this is on top of the normal children's heaving, regurgitation and general coughing until sick etc; Archie leading the tally with 2 to Oscars 1. The first time Archie aged one was given a Penguin biscuit from a clueless well wisher at the Rugby Club and he tried to swallow it whole. Luckily our friends a Dr and a Nurse were near by and the ever calm husband extracted it before I could even cross the crowded room. I also blogged last year about Oscar when he swallowed a foil sticker here
Despicable Mammy.... 
all terrifying but the worst has to
be this morning.

Today we went to a café in Tynemouth for breakfast, it was all going fine the boys tucking into their Children size Full English's and we were enjoying  a few minutes peace. Then I just happen to glance at Archie age 4 who was having a little cough and is now quietly retching.

He stops and I think it must have past but then he puts his finger into his mouth obviously trying to move or dislodge what ever is troubling him.

I grab a bowl from the table thinking he is going to be sick and not wanting to be embarrassed in case it goes everywhere.

Archies not really breathing now though...he's chocking.
I start to slightly panic and from a seated position give him couple of big pats.

It doesn't work though.

Archie is really struggling him self now, trying to retch and grab whatever is blocking his airway.
I leap up, its happened so fast I'm not even sure the husband has noticed until I say "He's chocking!!"

I give him two more hard smacks between the shoulder blades but nothing happens.
Archie has started to drool and his eyes are watering, I'm not sure if its from his blocked throat or he's trying to cry, either way he's not making a peep or breathing.

Chris rips him out of his seat and tips his head back trying to yank what ever is stuck in his airway but there is nothing there.

My blood runs cold, I don't even notice Oscar our one year old now screaming obviously distressed. I can sense the café is silent and people have started to stand up. 

I want to grab my little boy back like its a stranger or a dentist who has their fingers in his mouth not just my husband and 'have another go' but I know it will only be made worse by two people wrestling him.

I am inside begging him to cough "it" up or projectile vomit I couldn't care less if it goes on the ceiling now.

Chris has started to give him a good few whacks.

Still nothing.

I frantically look for a spoon thinking I could try and reach whatever it is or at least make him sick.

Chris gives him a hard shake kind of upside down.

Archie looks terrified, I don't notice if he's going blue but his top lip looks grey like dirty chewing gum and his eyes are streaming....still nothing.

Like in the movies I want to scream "Is there a Doctor here??" but I don't know what they will do? Would they even be able to remove it? What if they cant....this.isn't.real.

My heart is racing, I've started to shake and I feel sick myself now.....

Still nothing.

Then like an epiphany I say...maybe I shout "Over your knee" just as my husband is doing exactly that.


A piece of bacon to size of a stamp curled into a thick "C" shoots onto the floor and like the day he was born Archie crys out.

I have never felt more relieved ever and cry a bit my self as I cuddle him on my knee. He is sobbing now saying "He got a big fright". I am still shaking with no interest in the fresh sausage sandwich in front of me now and I think "Yes a big fright indeed"

This all happened in literally 2 minutes.

Even though we made quite a commotion the staff didn't really even notice and although the next table did ask if Archie was OK after, no body actually helped. Could they have? Maybe they wanted to but didn't know what to do. 

Me and Chris did a baby first aid course a couple of years ago and I'm so glad I did although I ignored the first rule "stay calm" and was completely panicked it did come back to both of us and I would have just been about to do the "stomach thrusts". I'm still going to refresh my skills and that's the only reason I've written this blog.

Not to scare anyone but to encourage everyone to do a course, you might save a life, even your own.

There are some free courses available and some more advanced ones for a small fee. Procedures are always being improved and changed so get up to date here.  



  1. What an emotional story, Ashlie, utterly awful and I don't mind saying I cried a bit too when it finally came out. Thanks for the advice, you're totally right and I must do the course too xxx

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