Two nights ago, I noticed Christian had something in his mouth. It was something thin, like a coin, and he was holding it casually between his back teeth and his cheek.
I wouldn’t have barked at him to spit it out, but he was lying on his back, for pete’s sake.
He immediately tried to get up and comply, but you know how you have to open your mouth a little wider to move something around? I saw him do just that, and gag just a bit.
When he was standing, I put my hand in front of him, “Spit it out.”
He shrugged. And opened his mouth wide.
“What happened to that penny in your mouth?” I screeched.
He shrugged again and pointed to his throat.
This was followed by frantic googling of what to do when your kid swallows a coin. Chad went a bit berserko.
Apparently pennies made before 1982 (?) could contain corrosive metals and are very dangerous to ingest. Could it be a dime? Chad had just handed C a handful of coins with both dimes and pennies.
ER? We paced and googled five minutes more.
URGENT CARE! I remembered from my days leading bike tours that urgent care was a great place to bring injured or hurt kids for dramatically less than emergency rooms. The closest urgent care was closing in 15 minutes – We began grabbing clothes, purses, books, and knitting. C was quiet through all this, but when he heard we were going to see a doctor, he began screaming and holding onto furniture. We got him to the car with a lot of sweet talk and cajoling. But we’d lost time while prying his fingers off the door frame.
It was 7:01 when we arrived at the firmly locked and definitely closed doors of the urgent care facility that was supposed to be open until 7 pm. Granted, this was July 3, and I couldn’t blame anyone for cutting out early the day before the July 4th.
Deflated, we sat down on the curb and I began doing what I should have done to begin with, which was CALL DR. BOB SEARS. Dr. Bob is our trusted pediatrician.
His answering service message asked all callers to please check with www.AskDrSears.com before paging the doctor.
I knew this was the right thing to do. In fact, I’ve said it myself a hundred times, “Have you checked www.askdrsears.com?”
Reading about swallowed objects on askdrsears.com was tremendously reassuring. Basically, anything small enough to be swallowed and reach the stomach is small enough to come out in the poop. It is recommended to check the poop for at least a week, or until the object come out. There was no mention of toxic pennies, only the incredible anecdote of an open safety pin passing through a child without any discomfort or discernable harm.
So, for the last two days Christian has been very reluctantly pooping on a plastic potty. And I have been very reluctantly going through aforementioned poop with gloved fingers. GROSS. And VERY SMELLY.
I was rewarded with a poopy dime this morning. Unbelievable.
It was scrubbed and disinfected and photographed for posterity.
Christian swear he will never put another coin in his mouth.
I’m putting it on my list of things-I-never-had-to-do-with-Bella.