I just heard from my mother that my 2.5-year-old niece recently swallowed a hair barrette. They did an X-ray (or whatever it is they do in these situations) and determined that the barrette was in her small intestine. My sister is monitoring her diapers, looking for the barrette.
Anybody got any interesting stories of other small children swallowing inappropriate objects? Ideally ones where the kid was all right in the end?
When I was a kid, my brother swallowed a quarter. He and my mom were not diligent enough to actually recover the coin when it returned, but it must have come out okay (ha!), since that was over thirty years ago.
I tell ya, when I saw the paramedics coming to take my brother, I spit my dime right out.
A friend of mine discovered a thumbtack in her son’s diaper while changing it. She called the doctor right away, and he verbally shrugged. His take on it was that there was no need to do anything, since it had made the full journey on its own.
Of course, he sang a different tune when the bulletin board came out …
Family lore has it that when my father was little, three years or so, my grandmother gave him a hammer and nail to play with. (I KNOW!!!) People invariably imagine that he whacked some body part with the hammer.
One of my earliest memories was when I was around three or four. I was supposed to be taking a nap but I was awake and was playing with a penny. Which I then stuck in my mouth and swallowed. Thinking this might be a bad thing, I went downstairs and told my mother but she said it was no big deal and sent me back to bed. Years later, I mentioned this to my mother and said I was surprised in retrospect that she apparently hadn’t been worried about any possible ill effects. She didn’t remember the incident but said she probably had thought I made up the story about the penny to get out of taking a nap.
When my younger son was nine months old he swallowed a button battery. I had given him my car keys to play with, and the back snapped off the remote control, leaving the screw still tightly in place, and before any of us could do anything the battery had gone.
I rushed off to the emergency room with him where they did an x-ray and yes, indeed it was in his stomach. Because he was so small and the battery was a big one (not to mention the danger of corrosion) they decided to knock him out and get it out via a stomach camera which they did there and then.
I still feel shame and fear when I think about it but really I don’t know what I could have done to prevent it (except not give him the car keys of course). He stayed the night in hospital because he’d had a general but he was absolutely fine.
When I was about five I was lying in bed playing with a big marble. I put it in my mouth and it promptly fell to the back of my throat (I was lying on my back) and blocked my airway completely. I tried to call for my Dad but of course nothing came out, and I sat up in a big panic, which caused the marble to shift.
I very quietly took the marble out of my mouth and chucked it under my bed and never said anything to either parent, knowing that I would have got into terrible trouble.
As a parent now I shudder to think that they could have come to bed and found me lifeless…
My sister took my niece back to the hospital yesterday, since she hadn’t found the barrette in any of her diapers and it had been two weeks since she swallowed it. There is no sign of the barrette inside her now, so it looks like she did pass it, even though my sister never found it. We’re all very relieved.
When I was little we were taken to the shoe store and got new Buster Brown shoes. We loved this, because BB’s were one of the brands that came with a toy bribe for the kids. This time it was some kind of game that came with several small magnets. Anyway, some time during the evening I came down with a headache while I was playing with my prize. My mother gave me a couple of aspirin for it and I went off to the bathroom to take them with some water.
When I got back, the aspirin were still there beside the game, but the magnets were gone. I never found them again, but I have to admit, I didn’t look too hard.