Last night, I had a sweet visit with my firstborn via Facetime. While it is not as good as an in person visit, of course, it is the next best thing. The grandchildren were already in bed and I didn’t get to see them but that gave my son and me a little extra time to catch up. He is a physician, board certified in both pediatrics and tropical medicine. He spent the first few years, after residency, practicing in a pediatric group in an “upscale” setting. While he enjoyed it, he longed for more challenges and an opportunity to work with those in greater need. He spent the next almost seven years as a missionary doctor in the Andes Mountains of Peru. He and his precious family loved the opportunity and the Quechua people. There, my grandchildren quickly became bilingual. (My son and his wife had taken about 6 to 7 months of intensive language school in the beginning.) While in Peru, they also adopted my beautiful “Peruvian Princess” granddaughter.
When they returned to the states a couple of years ago, my son accepted a position teaching at an outstanding medical school. He teaches residents and medical students preparing for a future in pediatrics. (And he has a much better disposition and personality than Dr. House!) He sees patients in a clinic setting as well. He still uses his tropical medicine specialty teaching in frequent mission opportunities and at the medical school.
He told me about an episode this past week which, thankfully, had a happy ending. A three year old boy presented in acute distress after aspirating a GRAPE! It was a scary time as he and his team worked to save the young child’s life. At first, repeated efforts of the Heimlich hug were unsuccessful. The child became unconscious and the parents were hysterical. They were just before having to perform CPR, when one last abdominal thrust dislodged the grape! No doubt the parents as well as my son and the rest of the team breathed a big sigh of relief.
Over a long nursing career, I participated in more than my share of “codes”. I’m thankful that I don’t have to do that anymore. However, I am around four of my precious grandchildren often now and need to review my CPR! I also need to teach them how to correctly perform the Heimlich maneuver.
And I don’t think that I will feed them grapes anytime soon…
Featured photo at top: my son biking out west during college.