Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Kermit the Frog and Doritos

Sometime during my early high school days, I invited one of my best friends, Susan, to spend the night at my house. We made all kinds of plans, the biggest part was purchasing a mother-load of junk food and staying up most of the night.

Our first activity for this adventure was going to the grocery store and spending way too much money on junk food - dark chocolate, licorice, candies, Doritos, pop and more. Then we headed to my house and set up my bedroom for our feast. I slept with a sheet of plywood under my mattress, and there were two beds in my bedroom, so we pulled that plywood out and put one end under the second bed creating a large surface to place all our junk food on.

Then we began our adventure...eating and talking and laughing and goofing off. I had a tape recorder what would record, so we played around with that but found that the batteries were nearly dead, so we put in new batteries and rewound and listened to what we had recorded....we sounded like the Chipmunks! So we spent the next few hours recording with the week batteries and playing the recording with the new batteries. Then we started experimenting with doing imitations of famous people/characters. One of the ones I liked to do was Kermit the Frog. So we did a little improv with Kermit the Frog being interviewed as he was traveling in Mexico and trying out their spicy foods. I threw a Dorito in my mouth and then gasped as though the food was extremely hot...only problem was, I inhaled part of the Dorito. And it stuck. Really stuck. I don't remember much after that point, and the next thing I was aware of was that I was dreaming that someone had a pillow over my head and I was suffocating. I started to come around, dizzy and couldn't get my bearings...then I felt like I needed to throw up...I lunged off the bed and ran to the bathroom, but I didn't throw up...I just sat there shaking and week. Susan had ran to the bathroom with me and I asked what had happened.

She told me that I had choked on that Dorito and had lost consciousness - gone completely limp on my bed. She said she jumped over to my bed, launching junk food everywhere, and tried to get me to come around, but I wasn't breathing. She then got me into position and did the Heimlich maneuver on me, and after a couple of tries I started to come to, and then I struggled and started heading for the bathroom.

I had no idea what the Heimlich maneuver was at the time, but I was sure glad she knew. I came to find out that just before this event, Susan had taken a babysitting course at the local hospital and included in the training was CPR and what to do if someone was truly choking!

I just did a little research about the Heimlich maneuver and found out that Dr Heimlich first published his findings on how to help a victim of choking back in 1974 (my choking experience was probably in 1979) so this was something new at the time. I also found out that the first time anyone was saved from choking to death was in 1974 in Bellvue, WA...just miles from my home! I love trivia!

I am so thankful that God had prepared Susan so that she could help me when I could not help myself. I also recently found Susan again after doing some searching and talked with her, and confirmed that she had taken that babysitting course that prepared her for this very unexpected event. She remembers this particular sleep over but does not remember the choking incident, but I do. Thanks, Susan, for being there for me even though you don't remember it. I think when we have a close call with death it becomes very memorable for us, but maybe not so much for our rescuers!

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