The Wayward Grape

A few years ago, I was enjoying a catered Whole Foods breakfast at my mom’s group. And I was enjoying it, because, well, I’m cheap. I don’t shop at Whole Foods, but if someone else is going to buy their food for me, it’s a good day. There we were enjoying big, juicy, organic strawberries and croissants filled with chocolate when this cute little nurse gets up and starts scaring the strawberries right out of our mouths. She’s up there telling us what to do if our kids start choking or if we find them unconscious. Choking? Unconscious? I was equally scared and annoyed. First of all, um-I cut grapes into 50 pieces with my handy-dandy expensive knife my aunt gave me for my wedding. Secondly, I lived in a BUNGALOW – my baby was never out of my sight. Thirdly, thanks to this little nurse, I felt a little nauseated at the thought of my child dying, and my organic strawberries and chocolate croissants were staring up at me like “Hey! Did you forget about us?”. I looked around and every girl in the room was also staring forward in terror and neglecting their pretty strawberries.

But, she did have a point. Maybe I should have learned CPR or just listened to what she had to say. I did neither.

Another kid and two and a half years later I drug my reluctant self to Burleson at rush hour during Christmas week and took a five-hour CPR class. Not because I thought that anything would ever happen to me, but because a current CPR/AED certification was required to obtain a Group Fitness Certification. It was long. It was tedious. It ran late. There were no snacks (not even Christmas snacks). But I came home feeling a little more prepared should something crazy happen to someone else’s kid.

Two weeks ago, I was standing at our kitchen counter while my girls finished up their dinner. The baby was probably eating something squishy and making a big mess. The big girl was eating grapes. She doesn’t eat much, but she eats grapes a lot so I’d gotten a little lazy with cutting them into 50 pieces, or even 2. I looked down for an instant and when I looked up, her face was frozen in horror. It was a grape…in her throat. I can tell you right now that CPR class makes you feel like a rock star but whenever it’s actually happening, you feel like a blubbering crazy hysterical fool. I started screaming and slapping her back as hard as possible (they don’t teach you that in CPR), then I swept her up and heimlich’ed my own kid. The grape came up, she screamed, and we both cried and prayed and cried some more.

SO, I’d like to encourage you, don’t delay. Get CPR trained. Sign up today. Know how to perform the Heimlich on yourself, your child, or your spouse. It’s probably unlikely you will ever need it, but in that instant that you do, 911 will not get there quick enough to save your child’s life. Click here to find classes near you, today.


Have you ever had a life saving experience? What did you do? How did you help?

Anna is wife to Matt and mom to two little ladies: Charlie and Georgia, and dog mom to the best dog ever, Attie, and the worst little Beagle ever, Toby. Besides chasing around her girls full time, Anna spends her spare time running her business, Fit4Mom SW Fort Worth. And can be found enjoying British TV, dark chocolate, and a good cup of coffee with her husband.


  1. Had to do mouth to mouth to a drowning victim the summer after my junior year in high school. When we got I’m out of the water, his face was blue and his lips were purple. First thing that ran through my mind was I am touching a dead person, the next thought, Lord, help me! He did, the guy lived and we went on with our trip.
    On another trip, I was eating beef fajitas, after having had my mouth wired shut for four weeks. Gt lazy about chewing my food good, went to swallow and it got stuck! Two different friends had to do heimlich on me, I am long waisted and they had problems finding the right spot, and out the meat finally came.
    It is very important to know these things! As a mom it helped me not to freak when things happened. I knew that just because my kids was coughing on some food, it was ok. No cough, then do something! Get the training, I have used it and you may need to as well!

    • Oh my goodness, Gayla! I read that most people don’t perform any kind of CPR when necessary be/c they are scared of cracking ribs. However the chance of surviving is SUBSTANTIALLY higher when people even just do chest compressions. I still freaked out, but was glad I knew what to do! I’m sort of the “it’ll never happen to me” kind of girl, so being forced to take a class was a good thing!

  2. There is nothing worse than imagining the horrific scenarios. I remember taking our child CPR classes before having Jack and thinking, “will I really be able to do this if push came to shove?” I guess you don’t know until it happens and you better be ready to handle it! Thanks for the reminder.

  3. Ok, I have tears in my eyes cause I have gotten quite attached to that “big girl” of yours in my Sunday school class. Thank you for taking that CPR class. If you ever have triplets (at least in Arizona) they will not let your take your babies home until you have taken CPR. It is not easy to think about these situations but it is good to be prepared.

    • Susan, you are so sweet. It’s just so wonderful dropping her off with familiar faces. She and I talk about how you had 3 babies in your tummy a lot. Haha! 🙂


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