Monday, March 18, 2013

Rescue 911

I'm getting a little tired of Facebook.  Don't get me wrong-- I still check it compulsively, lest I miss out on the news that a former high school classmate that I haven't seen since 1997 get an unattractive pedicure at a nail joint in Missouri, or that 74 of my "friends" really, REALLY want me to play Farmville.  It just seems as though, lately, my News Feed has been a little dry.

Because of that, I often seek out the news and video clips that my friends share, anticipating the excitement of watching a guy fall off a ladder, or a malfunctioning washing machine doing the Harlem Shake.

You know, the important things in life.

So when I saw the following clip that a friend had shared, I couldn't help but watch and pass it along myself.

For those of you that can't view the video, it is a clip sharing the story of a 5 year-old girl named Savannah who called 911 after her father collapsed with chest pains.  Not only was this girl calm and collected, answering the dispatchers questions with confidence and even pausing to encourage her Dad that help was on the way, but she did all of it with a sassy silliness that officially made this girl The Cutest Thing Ever.

After I'd watched the video and shared it on Facebook, I got thinking about how smart this man was to teach his daughter what to do in the event of an emergency.  I've considered having a similar discussion with Cael, who is definitely smart and tech-savvy enough to make a simple phone call, but the honest truth is that I think my boys would more likely take my collapse as an opportunity to beat me with their homemade swords than a sign that I need medical attention.

But just in case my potential demise took place when Cael was in a particularly charitable mood, I thought it wouldn't hurt to have a discussion about what to do in case Mommy was hurt.

"Hey Cael, I want to talk to you about something."

"--I didn't do it!  I saw the old diapers and Graham said it would be funny but I know I'm a big boy and I don't need--"

"--Cael, you're not in trouble.  I wanted to talk to you about something else.  What would you do if I got really sick or hurt and I needed help?"

"Oh.  I'd go get Daddy or Papa.  Or Amy."

"How would you get to them?  You know you can't drive."

"I don't know.  If I couldn't get them, I guess I'd jump on you to wake you up.  Or I'd use a bat or something."

Okay, it wasn't a sword, but I was pretty close.

"If I'm hurt, hitting me with something probably isn't a good idea.  But here is what you should do; you should find my cell phone, which I usually have with me, and put in three numbers: 911."

"Oh, yeah, we talked about that at school."

"That's right.  When you call that number, someone will answer the phone and ask you questions to find out what is wrong, and then they will send an ambulance."

"Okay, Mom."

"Now here's my phone.  I want to see if you know how to make a phone call.  You put in those numbers, but don't hit send, okay?"


I knew this part was risky, and the last thing I wanted was for my son to start a new obsession with dialing 911 to ask for hot dogs or dirty jokes, but I also didn't want my efforts to be wasted because he couldn't navigate my iPhone well enough to place an actual call. 

"Cael, what are you doing?!?"

"Playing Temple Run."

"What are you supposed to be doing?"

"Calling an ambulance."

"If I'm really hurt, Cael, you need to follow directions quickly and not stop to play games."

"But you're not."

"I know, but this is important, and I want you to pay attention."

"Okay, Mom.  See?  911.  Now I'm going to call '863'.  Or maybe '229'."

Obviously I will have to be pretty vigilant with my phone in the days to come, making sure he doesn't steal it and place unnecessary calls to information or overseas nations.  But I did feel a sense of relief knowing that if something were to happen, I had my very own sassy child present to call for help. 

I just wish that sense of relief had lasted longer.

"Wait, Cael.  What were you saying you did with those old diapers...?"

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Leave your own "ism". Cael and Graham double-dog dare you.