Secondary Drowning + My Recent Experience & Real Life Almost Nightmare

Tuesday, May 20, 2014



This video has nothing to do with this post other than the fact that I must have watched it at least a hundred times over the past weekend while we waited.  And I love how Ronin gives me the "Mom you are so over the top and it's annoying" look at the end.  

Over the weekend I experienced one of the worst things since becoming a mother.  It was a moment where once the shock set in as to what might actually happen a thousand memories, regrets...things that I wish I had done differently that day flashed through my mind.

I tend to hesitate when it comes to sharing super personal experiences on the blog since I like to keep some areas of my life private but this particular event I decided that it was best to share, even though it made me feel like the worst mom in the world.  I felt like bringing awareness to what happened may prevent something from happening like this to you.

Here is the story:

It was a pretty normal Saturday (or so I thought).  We woke up early, Ian and I made coffee and we had our weekend family tradition of scrambled eggs. We played in the backyard and then Ronin and I headed off to Target to pick up the usual necessities.  On our way home I ran over a nail and got a flat tire. Major bummer.  2 hours later we finally got the spare on.  At this point it was 2:30 in the afternoon and we were supposed to be at my niece's birthday party at 3.  Somehow I made it home in time to shower, get the kids swim trunks on and get them all sun screened up.  We made it to the party at 3:30.  It was a pool party so all the cousins were in the pool, jumping around splashing and having a great time.  All the adults were also all outside sitting around and enjoying the nice weather.  I was watching Ronin who was sitting on the big step on the spa, where he had basically stayed put since entering the pool area.

Here is where everything went all wrong... I was sitting right on the edge of the outside of the spa, just a few inches from where Ronin was playing.  I shifted my sitting position to talk to my sister-in-law.  I turned around for maybe 5 seconds tops. I turned back around to take a peek at Ronin and he was not on the step. Mom panic and fear kicked into overdrive.  I frantically scanned the spa and saw him being whirled by the jets to the other end of the spa where his little head was bobbing up and down trying desperately to get air. I pulled him out as fast as I possibly could.  The whole ordeal was  around 20 seconds from when he fell into the water until when I got him out.  Other than Ronin being visibly upset and coughing to get the water out he seemed totally fine after he had calmed down.  I am the most over the top over paranoid mom ever and I was so mad at myself that this happened literally inches away from me!  He did seem more tired than usual after it happened but I figured he was exhausted from what just occurred combined with all the heat and exercise he had had for the last few hours.  We left the party soon after.

At home Ronin just didn't seem like himself.  It could have just been chalked up to him being overly tired but I felt in my gut that it was something else.  He also started doing this weird cough that made him tense up every time he exerted the effort.  I wondered maybe he was still just trying to cough up any water from earlier.  I called my pediatrician and left her a brief message explaining what had happened and what his symptoms were at the moment.  A few minutes later (that was quick I thought as I answered the phone) she called me back.  Now Ronin's pediatrician is usually pretty calm.  And most of the time when I phone her for an "emergency" she says everything is going to be fine and gives me a list of symptoms to watch for and tells me if my kids get worse then to bring them in to be seen.  Her motto is if it's not too serious then it is better to care for my boys at home rather than bringing them to the ER where they are exposed to all kinds of sicknesses.  This time was different. She was stern and said I needed to take Ronin to the ER NOW because he could be experiencing scary after effects of his near drowning incident (secondary drowning).  You can read more about what that is here and here.  I hung up and we all rushed to the ER.  The nurses immediately brought us back.  Within moments the Dr was in.  He got my story again and in a scolding tone asked me why I didn't bring him in sooner.  I told him that right after it happened he seemed totally fine.  I told him he was breathing normal and gave no signs that he was in distress.  He did not like my answer and knowing what I do know now, I don't blame him.  They took Ronin's temp and it was 101.  So weird since he was definitely not sick that day.

The doctor ordered an immediate chest x-ray along with a whole list of blood tests.  At this point in the evening Ronin was acting limp and almost unresponsive.  Once the results were in the doctor came in with the update.  His facial expression did not look like it was going to give good news.  He said Ronin's blood work came back normal (that's good I thought!) but....the chest x-rays were not good.  He said his lungs aspirated.  Consequences of this range from no injury at all, to chemical pnuemonitis (from the chemicals in the spa), to death within minutes from asphyxiation.  He said at this point it was very serious and he needed to be ambulanced immediately down to Children's Hospital in San Diego to see a Pediatric Specialist.  He said all the arrangements were already made and the doctors and team of nurses were waiting for him.  My heart crushed into a million little pieces at that moment.  I felt like it was literally getting ripped out of my chest.  This was my fault no matter how many times people were telling me it was an accident and it could have happened to anyone.

On the ambulance ride down to Children's Hospital Ronin's oxygen levels started dropping.  I watched as the little screen in front of him went from 98% to 92% to 89% to 74%.  The team on board scrambled to attach an oxygen mask over his little face.  I panicked!  They tried to keep me calm and told me he was okay but I have never felt so helpless in my life.  When we arrived at Children's hospital a pediatric specialist along with 4 nurses were waiting for us.  They brought us to our room where there was a x-ray technician waiting.  They did another chest x-ray and more blood work.  They told me at "this point" we just had to monitor Ronin and wait.  Wait for what?! They hooked him up to all kinds of machines and we waited...all night long while Ian and I watched him sleep.  On Sunday the sweetest doctor came in and talked to us.  She told me that this freak accident caused by the aftermath of a near drowning incident happens more than I might think.  She said we did the right thing of bringing Ronin in and that many times it goes terribly wrong (such as parents putting their kids down to sleep and then they never wake up again) because parents think that there kids are fine if they start breathing normally again after a near drowning event.  She also told us that there were 2 other little boys on the same floor as Ronin who were also there for the same exact thing!

She said she was very pleased because the latest x-ray had shown that the water trapped in his lungs was beginning to clear significantly.  The not so good news was that he had chemical pneumonitis due to the chemicals from the spa getting trapped in his lungs.  His lungs were irritated and inflamed but she told us that things were looking better despite the diagnosis.  At this point she said the staff will monitor him a little longer making sure a fever or other lung complications do not arise.

Ronin woke up around 10am on Sunday.  What I mean is for the first time since the incident he woke up beyond pissed off that he had all these little tubes on him, an IV in his arm and a heart beat monitor wrapped tightly around his big toe.  I have never in my life been more happy to see such a grouchy little man!  He was back and acting like his normal Ronin self.  The nurses came in because they heard him making such a commotion.  This was a great sign.

Later that day we got the news that Ronin was officially in the clear and was able to get discharged and go home. Praise God.

I am forever changed since this happened.  I will not let this define me but you can guarantee that I will be doing things much differently from here on out.  It was a huge wakeup call.  And it really taught me that yes...in just a few seconds your life can change forever.  I got a too close taste of what that really can be like.

Before Saturday I had never heard of secondary drowning.  If I had heard of it before I would have done things differently.  I would have brought him in the moment I noticed a change in his behavior even if it was just me being over paranoid or thinking he was just exhausted from the days activities.

What you need to know:

Secondary drowning can be difficult to recognize since the victim appears to be ok right after a near-drowning event.  Your child may breathe in a very small amount of water and seem like they have successfully expelled it through coughing.  In secondary drowning the water may fill up some of the oxygen rich pores of the lungs, which reduces the ability to oxygenate blood as it passes through.   The heart does not slow down significantly with this process but rather very very slowly so your child will still be able to talk and walk.  The only symptoms may be a sudden change in personality or level of awareness (just like Ronin experienced) as the blood oxygen level drops over time.

So if your child has experienced a near drowning experience (it can happen in as little water as a puddle or in the bathtub) watch for a sudden change of personality or energy level.  You can save your child's life if you act quickly and get them medical treatment immediately.

I hope this brings awareness to all who read this.  I am so thankful that Ronin is okay and that I decided to not put him to bed that night thinking everything was fine.  I have said many many thank you prayers over the past few days for that.  I want to make sure this never happens to another child so pass this on and please share with those who you think might need to know.

299 comments:

1 – 200 of 299   Newer›   Newest»
Tammy said...

Thank God you listened to your Mama intuition! You are a great mother. I am definitely sharing this as I know too many friends who've experienced their little ones having similar accidents. So happy your sweet boy is OK and hoping he recovers 100% fast.

emjay said...

Oh my goodness; I had no idea that there was a such thing as secondary drowning. Thanks for sharing your story and i'm glad Ronin is doing well.

Anonymous said...

How freaking scary! I have never heard of this either! So although as difficult as this was to share, I really appreciate it!
I have 3 kids, but a little boy about the same age as Ronin (turns 2 in June) and he gets in to everything. I've been having my own wake up calls in parking lots, as he loves to try and run. It scares the shit out of me (especially after reading the "Red Balloons for Ryan" story). Life can certainly change in an instant. I am so happy that you only had a scare and your little man is ok.
PS...you are not a bad mom. Accidents happen but you followed your instincts and called your doctor and took him in. I'll send a prayer your way!

Jen said...

Wow... thank you for sharing your experience. I know it must not be easy, but rest assured that not only ARE you a great mother, but you might save another life today, tomorrow, or the next day. I had never heard of secondary drowning either. So glad your little man is OK!

Barca Mama said...

Wow!!! Thanks for sharing. I will be sure to pass along what I have learned from this post.

Olivia said...

HOLY HELL. Thank you a million times for sharing this, I WILL BE SHARING THIS. You are an amazing mother, this could have happened to any of us!

Amy said...

oh my gosh, i have NEVER heard of this before in my life.
i am so sorry that y'all had to experience this, but thankfully he is wonderfully ok and you are able to help spread awareness!!
PRAISE GOD HE IS OK! goodness - i couldn't even imagine all of the emotions!

Becca said...

Thank you for sharing and informing me!!

Un-fancy Mama said...

Thank you for sharing your story! So scary and we all need to be aware of this. So glad your little man is okay!

Melissa Mitchell said...

Thank you so, so much for sharing this experience! I'm sure it was difficult to have to relive it and write about, but thank God your little boy is ok!! So sorry you had to experience such a terrifying event, but this could literally happen to anyone in a split second, so thank you for putting this out there. I will definitely share on my blog...

laurieb145 said...

OH MY GOODNESS! I just forwarded this to so many of my friends with kids. So scary. I am so glad Ronin is ok, huge score for your mama intuition!

Candice said...

I have NEVER heard about this....Thank you so much for sharing! Glad it all worked out as well and hope Ronin continues to feel better! Hugs to you :)

Danielle said...

Oh Lindsay:::I'm am so sorry you, Ronin and your family had to experience this, but I am so glad to read the happy ending! I have never heard of secondary drowning either, so thank you for sharing your story!

Caroline said...

Thank you Thank you for sharing this!!! I hate that you had to grow through this, but SO glad he is ok and all better! Thanks for bringing awareness and don't beat yourself up over this - it's not your fault! I know those days in the hospital are so hard as we just went through all of that, so glad your story turned out better then ours!

www.in-due-time.com

Urban Wife said...

Wow, I'm so sorry you guys had this awful experience and I'm glad your sweet boy is alive and recovering. Thank you for sharing about this, especially since I'd never even heard of it!

natasha {schue love} said...

This is just SO scary! I've actually heard of this before {Thanks Today Show} and it has be so paranoid. But like you said, he seemed fine after the incident. Thank goodness for Mother's intuition and a great ped who called right back. Wow. So glad he is ok.

Brooke said...

I have never heard of secondary drowning! Thank you for sharing. I am beyond paranoid with pools and only with my third discovered ISR. Check it out. We had amazing results and though it does not give the parents the ok to not pay attention it is a little back up survival source!

Simply LKJ said...

So glad to hear he was okay after all of that. I have heard of it, but only because my mother was a ER doctor for many years, and we grew up around water!! It is very scary. You did the brave thing, putting aside your pride, to tell others about your experience. And yes, you never know who may be reading this and be in the same position some day. Because of something I read on another blog a year before, I was able to help point another blog friend in the right direction, and her grandson was diagnosed sooner rather than later and only had mild symptoms...no long term health effects. Don't beat yourself up for it. We have all at some point in time been in your shoes as a mom in some form or fashion. It can happen to anyone...that is the point!

Skye said...

how scary! i am so glad that everything worked out just fine. you are a wonderful mom! i am so thankful you shared this story. i never knew of such an issue and i'm glad to know with my two year old daughter and twin girls on the way.

Anonymous said...

I am a lifeguard and always fear the worst with secondary drowning, it is so hard to even explain it to people, thank goodness your mom-tuition is on point, you know your child best, if they are acting strange, make the call to a doctor. Blessings to your family!

Ryan/Natalie King said...

Thank you for sharing and making me (and others) aware of secondary drowning. My daughter (15 mos) loves the water! I am glad your son is OK.

Meghan said...

Thank you so much for sharing this! You had me tearing up reading this because I can't imagine how scary this must have been for you! I've never heard of secondary drowning either.

Kate McCown said...

SO very thankful he is o.k. Thankful also that you shared this story. I was a lifeguard for 6 years and NEVER learned / heard about this. I will be sharing your story with all of my friends.

Julie Claveau said...

Holy molly. Thank you so much for sharing. I can't even begin to imagine how you must have felt. I will be extra vigilant with my kids around pools from now on, so many things can go wrong so quickly!

Love, Moon
Blog | Twitter

Alexa said...

Oh my God Lindsay. I couldn't stop saying that as I read your entire blog post. I am so relieved that little Ronin is ok and THANK YOU for sharing this. It must have been hard to relive, but I have never heard of this either. I am also an extremely anxious and paranoid person, but I would never have thought to bring him in. So glad he and YOU are ok. Hugs!

Megan said...

This brought tears to my eyes. Thank you so much for sharing this and making your readers aware. I have never heard of this either! I'm so glad that Ronin is well. I'm a protective Momma too and constantly have family saying to me that I worry too much (yada, yada). Thank God for Mother's Intuition.

Elaine said...

Oh my goodness. what a terrible, terrifying ordeal for you and your family. I am SO glad that Ronin is okay. I had heard of secondary drowning from my lifeguard/swim instructor training but a good reminder is always much appreciated. I am so glad that your story has ended with Ronin being okay. xo

Chelsea Cooper said...

Thank you for sharing! Like others, I had never heard of Secondary Drowning, so by sharing such a personal and near-tragic experience, you are probably saving tons of lives! So glad your story has a happy ending and that Ronin is doing well!

Ichi Ichibo said...

Thanks a lot for sharing!

Plain Jane said...

This is actually called a dry drowning. I am glad someone is sharing their story- unfortunately patrons don't believe lifeguards when they say to be checked out after a near drowning event.

Stephanie said...

Thank you for sharing this info.! Glad Ronin is ok.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing this. I am glad Ronin is OK.
I am surprised that postural drainage or percussion were not used to help clear the water from the lungs more quickly. (Those are the techniques used to help cystic fibrosis patients clear the excess secretions from their lungs.)

Anonymous said...

Never heard of this before...It must had been the scariest time for you and your husband. Thank God he is fine.....God Bless you all

athenab said...

Thank you for sharing!!!!!!!!! I have a pool/spa and a 2 year old. You just made me cry reading your story thinking what might have happened to our little boy.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for sharing this. I had no idea about this. I am a new mama, so thank you again for sharing this story. I can only imagine how scary this was.

Allison Kniffin said...

I'm so sorry this happened to you and your precious baby! But thank you for sharing your story. I'm definitely sharing this with everyone I know!

Erica Brescia said...

Thank you so much for sharing, and I'm so sorry you went through this awful experience. You very likely will save a life somehow by posting the story, though - I passed it onto others who had never heard of this before (and I had completely forgotten about it after hearing of it years ago.)

My kids' Mom said...

God Bless you! I hope you are feeling better. The same thing happened to us when we we lived in Italy, but instead of a pool it was the ocean. The same thing, I just turned away for seconds and then my daughter was gone (in very shallow water). I will nerev forget the feeling, the adrenalin in my body, and the different perspective on life I got after that event. Now, let's all hug our children a little bit extra. Best wishes to you! Kind regards, Anneli in Sweden

Brandy Lucas said...

I went through this last year with my then 2 year old little girl. I too had never heard of secondary drowning at the time and I had just completed the fire academy. But I knew my little girl wasn't acting right so I called my paramedic friend who told me to take her straight to the ER. She too was immediately rushed back and x-rays, breathing treatments, IV's etc. It was the scariest moment of my life. I'm so relieved to hear your little guy is doing better. I now warn all my friends of this danger.

Brandy Lucas said...

I went through this last year with my then 2 year old little girl. I too had never heard of secondary drowning at the time and I had just completed the fire academy. But I knew my little girl wasn't acting right so I called my paramedic friend who told me to take her straight to the ER. She too was immediately rushed back and x-rays, breathing treatments, IV's etc. It was the scariest moment of my life. I'm so relieved to hear your little guy is doing better. I now warn all my friends of this danger.

Mindy said...

We had a conversation about this with some moms at school last year and that was the first time I had ever heard of it. I was unaware of the symptoms, though, so thank you. How horrifying. This post totally made me cry. Emma was at the doctor yesterday - her tonsils were so swollen, I don't know how she was even able to breathe. Turns out she has Strep. But she has abnormally large tonsils anyway, as does Baby, and that was scary enough. The thought of her and Baby going under the knife is gut-wrenching. So the unexpected ER visit is a fear I can't even fathom.

Lindsay said...

This happened to my nephew awhile back. It's so scary! Thanks for sharing your story and reminding us that it's always better to be safe than sorry in situations that might seem like they are okay. Glad your little guy is okay!

Anonymous said...

THANK YOU, thank you so much. I never heard of this; so glad to learn about it.

Norma Grimmett said...

My grandson had a near drowning in a ditch in Idaho. When is mother pulled him out of the ditch he was unresponsive and not breathing. She started CPR right away, and called 911 and they responded ASAP, as his daddy is paramedic fireman and was out of town hunting. He was put on a ventilator, and was unresponsive still, my heart was breaking into a million pieces. The Drs. told my daughter that his little lungs was full of water, they kept him in a induced coma, in the intensive care for children. We had to watch and pray the this little guy would survive let alone have any brain damage. We all gather together as and family and prayed that this little guy would survive and the good Lord answered are prayers and he did survive. The Drs. told us that we had to watch him very carefully because of the secondary drowning or dry drowning as they called it, had happen to two other children in Idaho and they didn't survive. It was the worse week of my life in November, so parents or grandparents be aware of the second drowning!

Unknown said...

Glad your son is OK - thanks for the alert - I would also like direct people to another article on drowning that might save lives - it talks about the fact that drowning doesn't look like what we expect it to look like - http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/family/2013/06/rescuing_drowning_children_how_to_know_when_someone_is_in_trouble_in_the.html

Lilly said...

Thank you so much for sharing your story! I had never heard of secondary drowning until I came across your blog and I am so grateful now that I have. As a momma of a 1 and 3 year old with a pool and a small pond in our yard I am now going to be extra EXTRA vigilant and aware of them in the water and the secondary signs if anything ever happens to my babies. Thank you, thank you, thank you for making so many more people aware of this!

Jodi said...

Thank you so much for sharing this as I'm sure it was hard to. I have 5 little kids and with summer coming on, we will be spending a lot of time at our community pool. This is something I was unaware of and will be passing on to others as well. I feel like I would've done exactly the same things you did. I'm so thankful he is okay!!

Anonymous said...

I'm very glad your little guy is OK.
Thanks for the information; I had never heard of secondary drowning either.

Andrae Kelly said...

I'm am so sorry for this terrible experience. But thank you, thank you for sharing. I lost my son 19 months ago to a near drown accident that he never came back from. I have teamed up with a few other mom's this month as it's national water safety month and we have been blogging about water safety awareness. I would love to link to this blog if you don't mind. This is GREAT information. You can email me at andrae.kelly@yahoo.com. Oh and my blog is amkelly.blogspot.com Can't wait to hear from you!

Jessie Sears said...

Thank you so much for posting this...I swam competitvely for 12 years, was a lifeguard for 5 years, and have 2 small boys of my own who swim ALL the time. I have NEVER heard of this and am SO thankful you wrote this article. This is the first time I have read your blog, but I passed this on to about 10 other moms for added awareness. Thank you again and so glad your little boy is alright!

iluvaz said...

I had an incident where my daughter went under for a bit at a pool. I was right there and she was only a toddler. After that, I have paid to have all of my children learn ISR techniques from a certified instructor. It doesn't guarantee anything, but yesterday at the pool my three year old got pushed away from the steps as he swam. Immediately, he flipped on his back and called for me because he was scared. My baby knows how to float and how to escape from a pool. Do I still need to be diligent with my children? Of course, but I also know that every line of defense in this is worth having. Thank you for sharing your story, I have never heard of this and I'm glad to know and I'm also glad your son is okay.

CMW said...

Thank you sharing such a personal story with strangers! As a mother I can't imagine being in that situation - as I sit here sobbing tears of relief and joy for you and your precious Ronin. May your precious baby always be safe! Blessings to you and your family.

amikoch said...

I can't thank you enough for sharing your story, but I am so sorry you had to go through that! How terrifying. :( I was not aware of this and since I have a 15 month old, I am so glad I now know. So happy to know your son recovered well and is ok!!

Usha Rao said...

Thank god Ronin is fine. Also thanks for sharing your personal experience. This is the first time I am hearing about secondary drowning.

erin said...

Pools and little kids are so dangerous, this is what happened almost happened to us.....
http://erin-recgirl.blogspot.com/2014/05/it-almost-happened-to-us-tale-of-very.html

Hollie Ann said...

Wow....what a heartbreaking story. While I don't have kids, I can myself being the person who put their kid to sleep since there weren't any clear symptoms. I grew up in a very "sleep it off" kind of family. I've never heard of secondary drowning. EVER. This is such an important experience to share on the platform you've built here. I'm SO SO glad Ronin is okay. Don't be too hard on yourself. This really could have happened to anyone! Thank you for sharing, Linds.

Laura Kaiser said...

I learned so much reading this and will be sharing this with as many moms as i can reach. Thank you so much for sharing your story!!

Amanda M said...

This is terrifying! I am so, SO glad you are all ok. Water is such a joy and so scary all at once, such a difficult balance especially with young children.

Meg G said...

Wow. NEVER heard of that. Thank you so much for sharing. My son is 2.5 and we live in a beach town. I can't even imagine how hard that must have been for you.

On a side note - If you are ever interested in guest posting about this or other things on our blog, we would love to have you.

Meg
Co-founder
www.mommeetmom.com

Emily Shapley said...

Wow. So scary momma! I went through a drowning event with my 3 yr old daughter last year. luckily she was pulled out within 60 secs. She was unconscious and unresponsive. Cpr saved her life and she was rushed to er and then children's. After a very long 24 hours on the respirator and 2 days in recovery she was released. I have realized that telling my story may save lives just as yours will.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing. I have told my hubby and we will watch out for this now.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing. So happy to hear that your little guy made it out all right. I'm really annoyed that you got such shabby treatment from your original doctor- how on earth are we supposed to know about this (I've never heard of it and I work in a hospital)? Do pediatric clinics post things about this? I've heard more about whooping cough, measles, etc., than this. Thank you again.

Marissa said...

I am so glad Ronin is okay! I too have never heard of secondary drowning, so I am so glad you shared your experience. With swimming season right around the corner, we parents have to be even more diligent about our little ones (and our big ones) when they're near a body of water. Thanks for bringing awareness to this!

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for sharing this. I'm so glad that your little boy was OK.

Jocelyn said...

Thank you for sharing this! I'd never heard of this before. I'm so glad your son is all right!

megs7827 said...

I know how hard it is to share stories like this but I'm so glad you did!

Heidi said...

One thing to note which I hope you will add to your indications: It doesn't even have to be a near drowning. When kids play and splash in the pool and they inhale water, if they inhale enough it can trigger secondary drowning. Just be mindful of those symptoms after a day in the water.

Sarah said...

I've never heard of this either. Thank you for sharing! I'm so glad your son is OK.

Lindsay Roberts said...

Lindsay! This story took my breath away. How scary. You are helping so many by sharing your story. Praise God that he is ok. xoxo

Anonymous said...

I'm so thankful your little one is now okay. How terrible! I've never heard of this and have a little one of my own. Thank you for sharing. I'm so glad you did!

Jo-Anna@APrettyLife said...

Oh Lindsay I am SO sorry this happened to all of you, and so very very thankful for the best possible outcome. I feel like I 'know' you from this blog world over the last few years, and I just know you are an amazing person and mother. I truly hope you don't carry this too heavy in your heart for too long. These things do change you. I wish I could give you a big hug. xoxo

lilycatbyrne said...

Thank you so much for sharing this, very, very important.

Salt said...

My mom sent me this link today. I have a 2 year old daughter that loves to swim and I would never in a million years think that something like this was a possibility until I read your post. I'm so happy that this is making its way around the Internet. You could be saving so many lives by sharing your story! THANK YOU!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing, Where was his life jacket... always no matter what age below 8. Life jacket or vest in order. I have seen it prevent many a scary situation.

Anonymous said...

Thank you fir sharing. I have heard of a dry drowning but never a secondary drowning. Thank you for keeping my daughters a little safer this summer

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing...I have never heard of secondary drowning. I wonder why not? But I'm glad you had the courage to let us know of it!

Anonymous said...

You did a good thing sharing your experience. I have never heard of this and I suspect most people have not either. So glad your son is ok.

laura wood said...

I have heard of secondary drowning ( I watch a lot of medical shows) but I bet a lot of people haven't good idea for you to tell your story & listening to your self when you thought something was wrong.

Anonymous said...

Just by sharing this story, you are a great mom!! I'm so happy your boy is okay and that we are all learning from this experience. Sending you loads of love.

Heather said...

Thank you for sharing this personal story. I have never heard of secondary drowning before this. As a mom, and a preschool teacher, this is a very important thing to know. Thank you again for helping to educate others. I am very grateful you did.

MariLynn said...

Thank you for sharing. I, like the many others who have left comments, have never heard of secondary drowning. Hopefully by sharing your terrifying experience, it will save lives.

Double Z said...

Thank you so much for sharing. I know this was probably so hard to write .. I cried while reading it out loud to my husband. Please know that by sharing we are also more aware and more vigilant.. I would have done exactly the same thing or worse tried to put her to sleep as she might be "tired from the day".. that is such a scary thought. Thanks again

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing this I will now make my love ones aware of this as well

Anonymous said...

That is absolutely terrifying. Thank God he is okay, and thank God you listened to your intuition. Do not blame yoyrself. I've heard of secondary drowning, but didn't know how it happened. Thank you for sharing this so now I know what to watch out for with my own kids.

Anonymous said...

As I nurse I want to thank you for sharing this. It takes courage to be vulnerable and honest about such a personal situation. You very well may have helped save a childs life by sharing your story. Thank you Mama!! xo

Aria said...

Thank you so much for sharing, that was super brave. As someone who has held her child as they breath their last, my heart breaks for you that you had to go through this but at the same time I'm so happy that Ronin is okay. Praying that your heart heals and that you and your family can enjoy the rest of the summer together :)

Linda Stavast said...

Thank you for sharing, that to a LOT of courage, but now I know to watch out for this!

Missi Bacon said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you for sharing such a personal and scary story! By doing so I am sure you have saved the lives of countless other children!

Missi Bacon said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you for sharing such a personal and scary story! By doing so I am sure you have saved the lives of countless other children!

Shaunacey Bonneville said...

so scary, thank you for sharing.

Anonymous said...

Excellent information.. I will pass along to my sisters, nieces, nephews and friends. I have never heard of 'secondary drowning', and I am glad that this information was share with us. Thank you!!

Heather @ Finding Beauty in the Ordinary said...

I have shared this in all the mommy groups and my FB wall. This is horrifying. I love ya girl. So glad he is ok! And you too, mama! xo

Heather said...

I am so sorry this happened to you and I am so grateful you shared this information with us. this could happen to anyone...and by sharing you have now made us aware. Hugs for your little guy.

Daniela Escobar said...

Wow! I'm glad your little one is fine! we, as parents and caregivers need to be super sharp with the children around the pool! Never heard of this. Will share it on our facebook page.
We actually started a new side of our nanny agency called "POOL BABYSITTERS" for parties and is basically somebody that will monitor the pool while your host it!
around the pool you can't be too safe!

www.aznannies.com

Kymn said...

Thank you so so much for sharing, glad your son is okay.

With all your Heart said...

So glad your little boy is ok and I can't thank you enough for sharing this!! I've never heard of this and it will definitely make me keep my eyes on my little ones this summer in the water. Thank you SO much for sharing!!!

Deb said...

Mom -- I am so sorry this happened and I know as moms we blame ourselves so easily, but please know this -- I am an RN (for over 35 years) and I wasn't aware of secondary drowning, I might have made the same decision you did! Thank you for sharing your story, you may very well have saved another child's life!! I am glad your little man is ok, please don't beat yourself up!! God bless you!

Tricia said...

Thank you so much for posting this. So scary and glad Ronin is okay!

Stella said...

Lindsay, I read this blog post after a friend mentioned it. Your story hit home for me, having experienced our own second-hand-drowning incident during a overseas holiday with our 2 year old. Worst experience of my life!!! I am ever grateful for having the knowledge that I had at the time, mama instinct & for being strong enough to advocate for the proper care & attention even in a foreign country. It's been my mission to educate other families about second-hand-drowning ever since. Thank you for sharing your story. I'm glad that everything turned out okay for your little one.

For me, it didn't end after we got the clear that our little one was okay. There was an aftermath of emotions & post traumatic stress. Look after yourself. And keep talking about it. :)

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for sharing this story!! I have never heard of this before, and it scared the bejeezus out of me because we had a near-drowning incident last August. Now I'm trying to think back to how my toddler behaved afterwards... so terrifying what could have happened.

I am so sorry that any of the health care workers made you feel bad for not bringing him in right away... every time we DO bring the kid in they roll their eyes, but then suddenly we're not bringing him in enough?! It's impossible to react perfectly in every situation unless you're a pediatrician yourself!

Brenda Quintana said...

Thanks for sharing your story. You probably saved someone's life by sharing it. I'm so glad to hear that your son is okay.

Vicki said...

Just wanted to add this : there is a difference between "dry drowning" and "secondary drowning". Dry drowning is when the person doesn't inhale water, but doesn't inhale air, so they die. This was a case of secondary drowning, when the person inhales water and later has respiratory distress because of it. http://health.clevelandclinic.org/2013/08/can-kids-drown-after-leaving-the-water/

Valarie Petersen said...

wow!!! I've been a nurse for over 30 years, and I have 4 kids, and I've NEVER heard of this!!! It could have easily happened to my toddler son several years ago when he was suddenly swept under in the ocean! Thank God my husband reached him in time, and thank God he didn't experience what your sweet boy did! I UNDERSTAND how kids can get in trouble quick! So glad that you shared this--

Kara Wheat said...

I was a lifeguard for four years, and kids wandering away and drowning was the MOST COMMON incident I ever had to deal with. I wish everyone knew about secondary drowning, because that is what scares me the most.

Caila said...

Thank you so much for sharing this! I loved hearing all the details, and it will help me to be extra aware when we have our kids and their friends in the pool this summer. I'm so glad you are bringing awareness to this! And praise God that little Ronin is ok. I will always listen to my mamma intuition!

Amelie Hall said...

WOW - I have never even heard of this before! Very good info to have, thanks for posting!

Anonymous said...

We just keep our kids out of pools. They have had swim lessons but when we get invited to a pool, it's likely that we will decline. Unless we are one on one in the pool or there is an added lifeguard, which one of my friends so graciously provides when she has the kiddos over.

Becky said...

I am so sorry you had to go through such an ordeal but I have no doubt that by you sharing your experience lives will be saved. Hug that precious boy extra tight (and give yourself some grace.)

Anonymous said...

Thank you very much for sharing... Blessings to you and yours.

sweet_de said...

Thank you for sharing. My #2 daughter had fallen in a pool under my sil care at age 2. Was pulled out right away but never thought things could turn worst hours later. Definitely sharing with everyone I know

Anonymous said...

Reading your story made me realise how serious something that happened to my daughter could have been. She was two and we were walking through the Italian garden at Hever Castle. She was a little ahead of me - maybe 3 metres - when she stepped onto weed that looked like grass but actually covered water all around the edge of the gardens. She went under as I dashed forward and I grabbed her as she came up, but the reed was slippery and she slipped through my hands. She went under as I watched in horror and the second time she surfaced, I grabbed her and pulled her out. The nearby crowd of mainly old ladies were horrified, but I think I was too shocked to actually understand what could have happened. As I reflected later, I was amazed at how deep the water was and tried not to muse on whether she could have been dragged under into some underground network of pipes. The rest is vague. She coughed a bit, but she wasn't actually upset, and then everything seemed okay. Once she was safe, I never thought twice about it, except that she was now in wet clothes and I had no spare so we had to cut short our visit and go home. Now that I have read your experience, I am even more amazed that nothing more serious happened. Thank you for telling us about secondary drowning. I had never heard of it.

Paula said...

thanks for sharing. We are putting in a pool right now so it is very timely. I know an adult man, an athlete who was swimming in the ocean and aspirated a tiny amount of water that developed severe pneumonia and was hospitalized and critically ill. He survived, but he didn't realize at the time that he had aspirated the water.

Jo Craig said...

Thanks so much for this post,
I have never heard of this! Will definitely share!

Emily Horning-Daniels said...

Thank you for this post! I have been in an emergency situation where I had to be helicoptered with my toddler to a Children's hospital because the place we were at couldn't save my kid (he is okay, he had choked on a stray quarter that had fallen out of a pocket or purse), and there is nothing scarier than that ride to the next place. I am glad your adorable boy is okay now, I will surely be extra vigilant in pool-related activities with all three of my kids! Bless you and your family.

Sarah said...

Tears. I'm so sorry. I'm so glad you listened to your maternal instinct and called the doctor and went to the ER right away. You're not a bad Mom, you're a great Mom. Thank goodness he's okay. And thank goodness we can all learn from this. Thank for you sharing.

Anonymous said...

Listening to your story breaks my heart. We all need to be aware. In 2010, I was teaching gymnastics to a 3 year old boy. Their family was in CA for a business trip and they had been in a hot tub at the hotel. The next day they were back in CO and the little boy was experiencing upper respiratory problems. They tried to take him in to seek medical attention but by then it was too late. What they thought was a cold ended up being so much worse. He was suffocating from chemical pneumonia. He lost his life and wasn't able to be saved. So sad. Please be aware and thank you for putting the information out there.

Sallie said...

How about praise doctors, nurses, SCIENCE? No, praise an invisible man in the sky. UGH. I'm glad your baby is alive.

Mrs. Butler said...

Thank you so much for sharing your story! I came across this post when a few of my mommy friends shared it on FB. Even in all my years of childcare, teaching, and now a couple in mothering, I've also never heard of such a thing. I know beyond the shadow of a doubt that you have saved a life somewhere in some time by sharing this post! I can tell by reading that you are a great mom who cares deeply about her children! May God bless you and your little man both as you work through the physical & emotional trauma you've gone through this past weekend!

Cathyb said...

Thank you for sharing. We had a similar incident -- to make it short, swimming at family party, surprise party guest arrives in front yard, pull my "fish" out of the pool and we ALL run to the front yard to greet him. A few moments later, my husband says "where's Jack?" and I immediately run back to the pool. (I will not dwell on when would I have asked this question??) He's a few inches under, just off the shallow end, not struggling, etc. People are sitting a few feet away, chatting; no one noticed a toddler slip in to the empty pool. Anyway, when we pulled him up, he coughed and sputtered, and cried for just a moment and was fine (?) A little while later, he took a solid nap, and all was good. But I always wonder if I should have taken him in; and now I realize I should have -- thankfully it all turned out okay, he was fine, but I will pass this along because I had never heard of it and we are swimmers/lifeguards, etc., and the nap in the middle of a loud party should have been a warning sign; I thought he was just "sleeping it off". Thank you for sharing.

Lorraine Hansen said...

Thank you for having the courage to share such a personal story...Glad to hear Ronin is ok.

Anonymous said...

I haven't been able to stop thinking about you since I first read this. There are a ton of comments and I hope none of them are hurtful or further your struggles with guilt, but I know well the feelings you are still sorting through. I know the staring at the ceiling feelings you wrestle with laying in bed, but it WAS an accident. I understand the arguments back to that...I do...Ive felt them. Try (I know its hard) to focus on the fact that in His great mercy...GOD SAVED HIM!!! He saved him. What a sweet and precious gift. We mommas have the false sense of security that we have the ability to keep our kids safe, but (as we know too well) freak accidents can happen to the most devoted of mommies. Know that God spared Ronin on that day. That he was with him, watching over him and spared and healed his little lungs on that day. Celebrate forever and change the memories of that day. Lay the guilt down and instead use that day as remembrance day for your family to always celebrate that the strength of God was with him and for him on that day and that He brought his mighty power down over Ronin to bring the breath of LIFE to Ronin's body. Im praying for you!! --Jordan

Me said...

Thanks for posting this! I have never heard of this and had no idea it was a thing to be concerned about. I am going to be taking my two year old swimming a lot this summer and I'm so glad I read this when I did. Glad your little one is okay! Good job, Momma, for checking with the doctor and going with your gut!

Anonymous said...

I have been a Swim Instructor for 16 years and am a huge advocate for Water Safety. Thank you for sharing this experience. I am sure it wasn't easy to share, but I know it will help many others. Two summers ago I taught a child to swim after she had a very similar experience in a hot tub. My advice would be once your son is well and feeling 100% get him into swim lessons that will help him learn how to be safe. I think it will be healing for both of you.

Allyson said...

Thank you for sharing! Knowledge is powerful! I will like & share for sure! So happy that all is good! Praises to God ... & all the nurses & doctors that he placed in this situation!

RBrody said...

I don't have kids but have many friends who do, and have reposted this to my facebook and Tumblr. I'm so glad your son was OK and that you decided to make this post, very few people seem to know that this is a risk. Best wishes.

lnmarie said...

Thank you for sharing your experience - I too had not heard of this and imagine I would of shook it off as my husband tends to be more in tune with illness with our 4 year old boys than I am! We have a pool and a beach house which makes me paranoid enough - and I've only recently let my boys play in the tub while I step out of the bathroom but I fear I would of thought they were okay if they coughed it out - I just took a Red Cross CPR program where they talked about drowning but not secondary drowning! thank you thank you thank you for sharing!

lnmarie said...

I'm very grateful I came across your blog and read about your experience as I too did not know about secondary drowning. I have 4 year old twin boys who are getting busier by the minute - we also have a pool and a beach house and although the boys are in swimming lessons they aren't strong enough yet to swim on their own. I fear I would of shook this off especially if they coughed and appeared fine but sleepy because my husband tends to tune in better to their illnesses. I just took a CPR certification program last week - drowning was mentioned but not secondary drowning! thank you thank you thank you! I will look out for this and not second guess myself if this ever happens!

allison said...

Thank you so much for sharing. I am beyond sorry this happened to you. I know you might have trouble with this, but DO FORGIVE YOURSELF. It wasn't your fault. As moms we're so quick to beat ourselves up over every mistake (or human weakness). Love to you.

Anisa said...

So sorry this happened to you and your family, but glad Ronin is ok. Thank you so much for sharing this. I had never heard about secondary drowning. I hope you can take some comfort in knowing your experience has enlightened numerous parents.

Anisa said...

I'm so sorry this happened to you and your family, but glad to hear Ronin is ok. Thank you for sharing this. I had never heard of secondary drowning before coming across your blog. Try to take some comfort in knowing your experience has enlightened numerous parents to the dangers of it. best wishes to you all!

Kelly Holzer said...

Thank you for sharing. I had never heard of secondary drowning and Im glad i know now. My daughter is 2 1/2 and loves to get in water. She is lesson and learning water safety but knowing about this is helpful. So sorry you went through this. Glad your son is ok.

Reba said...

I so agree with Jordan on this. Praise God for saving Robin's life. And I'm so thankful you shared this so many others may become aware of secondary drowning and its seriousness. Praying for you and your family. God is so good!

Brooke said...

Thank you for this! I've never heard of secondary drowning. I'll be sharing this post. You're no doubt going to save lives by sharing your story!

Mrs Priss Porter said...

I had never heard about secondary drowning either, and with three little ones - the thought is just so scary. I am so glad that everything turned out okay. You are a great mom, your boys are very lucky to have someone who cares about them so much! Because you did decide to share this, you are passing along something very important that MANY of us didn't even know was possible. Thank you for sharing and God Bless

Anonymous said...

As a mom that leaves for the beach in 8 days I appreciate you sharing this as I had never heard of it and will definitely be keeping an even closer eye on my daughter. I'm so glad things turned out okay for you!

piper. said...

omg how terrifying. definitely never heard of this, and it makes me infinitely more glad that we moved out of our house with a pool. thanks for sharing, and so glad your kiddo came out of it ok.

Anonymous said...

Thank you, thank you from the bottom of our hearts, for sharing this story. God bless you!

Awesome Mom said...

That is so scary! I am so glad he is ok! Thanks for putting this out there because I had no idea about this. I will be extra careful when the kids are swimming now.

sb said...

thank you SO much for sharing this. what a dreadful experience for your family. so grateful little R is well and so grateful to be aware of secondary drowning, to better protect my family!

Whitby said...

Wow--your post makes me terrified and angry at the same time. It makes me angry that the doctors would give you a hard time for something that so few of us are aware of! Reading through the comments, it is clear that a very very small percentage of your readers have ever heard of secondary drowning, and I would guess that the majority of us are very vigilant parents! How many of us have had an incident where our child has gone under the water for a few seconds and breathed in a little water? It happens so frequently, and yet most of us would not even think that our child was in any danger once the water had been coughed out! There should be information on this danger on a sign or poster in every public swimming pool, and in every pediatrician's office! Thank you so much for sharing your experience--I will share this on Facebook and do whatever I can to raise awareness of this danger. It terrifies me that I have four kids and have never heard of this before.

Anonymous said...

Thank you SO much for being brave enough to share this it really reminded me to be aware as I had heard of it once but forgot. Glad he is better too.

Karlene Petitt said...

Thank you so much for sharing this! I had no idea.

Anonymous said...

I am a Grandmother and I have never heard of this. Thank you for telling your story, it is very important information.

LovelyLady said...

Thank you for sharing. I realize how hard it must have been to open yourself up to judgement and Criticism. However I think all mothers can agree that we are never truly equipped when it comes to children in a blink of an eye our lives can change. Thanks to willingness to share your experience with us a life may now be saved. God bless you and your family.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing this VERY important message! Thank goodness your little man made a full recovery.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing! I was given the link from Facebook. This is a great reminder with summertime. I'm glad your sons ok and I believe you will save another life by sharing!

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for sharing this. As someone who has buried a child from drowning, I know how devastating this can truly be. But I had no idea about a "second drowning".

Autumn said...

Thank you brave mama, for sharing this story! Others have said this, but I'll add mine to it - Before reading your blog, I had NEVER heard of secondary drowning before. And I was just thinking about taking my 2 year-old swimming today. I'm so glad I'm informed now. Praise God that your little man is safe!

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for sharing. I had no idea about secondary drowning. These are the things that parenting books REALLY need to tell us and don't.

Anonymous said...

I was a lifeguard and am currently a nurse and have never heard of this. Thank you for sharing such a personal and terrifying story.

Dollie @ Teachers of Good Things said...

I have never heard of this before! Oh my goodness. My four year old has always loved water and is like a fish. I'm sorry you experienced this but THANK YOU for sharing your story. It could really save a life!

Rebecca Wear Robinson said...

Thank you for sharing. One child drowns every minute. It's a global epidemic and no one knows it's an issue. 'Drowning' doesn't even cover the emotional and also permanent medical toll of 'second drowning' and 'non-fatal drowning'. Thank you for sharing your experience, it takes true courage to let people know that drowning can happen in 2 minutes in 2 inches of water when even the best parents are on guard.

kate (storyteller) said...

thank you, and so glad your boy is okay. I read this aloud to my two teenage lifeguards, and have told them to talk to waterfront director to educate all guards to share with families should a crisis occur.

Anonymous said...

I am in my last semester of nursing school and have NEVER, EVER heard of this! I have a 10 month old little boy, and I am so thankful to have come across this post! Thank you so much for deciding to share your story. Education is the first line of prevention!

Anonymous said...

I am a Grandmother...and I have heard of this. Thank you for posting it, so others can be more aware!

Melissa @ Fit 'n' Well Mommy said...

I'm SO glad your son is okay. Wow, I never heard of this before and I'm so glad I read your post before we head into Summer. My son, who is 3, loves to swim, but he doesn't quite "swim" yet, even though we are taking lessons, so I'm always watching him like a hawk around the pool, but accidents can happen to anyone. I'm going to pass this along to all of my friends. Thank you for sharing your story!

Michelle Dudley said...

Thank you so much for sharing. I experienced a near-drowning with my 3 year old daughter 3 years ago... it happened right in front of my husband and I at the kiddie pool at our club. I never heard of secondary drowning and am so grateful that she did not experience that. That day also changed me, and I didn't go through something as traumatic as you did with your son. Thanks again for sharing.

Elizabeth said...

You are a wonderful mother, and kudos to you for not allowing your own pride to stand in the way of sharing this story. I read it, told my brother about it (he has a young child), and posted it on my facebook page. Everyone who is reading is said they had no idea about "secondary drowning." You sharing your story WILL save someone's child. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

don't feel bad, accidents do happen and its sounds like your vigilance and that of your doctor(s) saved his life. Conngrats on being a good mother.


Anonymous said...

just curious...have you worked with him in a pool b4 this event? was he dunked at all?

Mary Renee said...

Thank you for sharing this. I found this via a link shared by Sarah Mae. I tagged all of my friends on Facebook and they have shared with their friends. Out of all my friends, none of us had heard of this before.
Thank you for taking time to share such a scary and personal story. You are helping to save many kiddos because of your willingness to share.

martha68 said...

the rule of thumb is that if your child has a near drowning incient, it is best to take them to the ER for all the reasons mentioned in your article. the water, either treated or not, that gets into their lungs can throw all their electroytes off balance. scary.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for sharing your story. I shared it on my facebook to many new moms and they (and more) have in turn shared it on their pages. You sharing your story will prevent tragedy, for sure!

The Growing Goodsons said...

Thank you for sharing your story. We are moving into a house next week that has a pool and I have 3 little ones. Right now we are a place with a pool as well. I've never heard of secondary drowning and am thankful that I now know there is such a thing and what to look for. So glad your little guy is okay and praise God you listened to your mother's instants! Thanks again for sharing!

Michelle {lovely little things} said...

Thank you for sharing, it sounds scary beyond belief, and I am so thankful your little guy is okay. Thanks for spreading the word.

Anonymous said...

If I had not known this, and shared it with my mother, she would not know that my little six-year-old down syndrome brother could suffer, and possibly die from this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thank the Lord that your sweet son is okay!

Dorieusc said...

Thank you for sharing!

drumsticks said...

You are an OUTSTANDING mother! Thank you so very much for sharing your story to all of us. It was such a touching story that I could not keep from tearing up. We are due in November and even though it will be a while, we will definitely not forget this valuable lesson! Thank you, again!

astassen2013 said...

Thank you so much for sharing what must undoubtedly have been one of the scariest and most distressing experiences of your life! I had never heard of secondary drowning before I read this and will definitely be sharing this info! Wishing you and yours all the best x

Ailin Stimson said...

I know many have said it before, but THANK YOU! My son had a similar accident at a water park last year, and he ended up being just fine, but I never knew the risks! Could have been so much worse! I'm sharing this with all my friends and family, hopefully this kind of awareness will save many lives this year. THANKS AGAIN, it's not easy to admit things like this publicly.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for making us aware of this. My son experienced a similar near-drowning in a spa. We, too, were at a party, and I had no clue the middle of the spa was taller than him, and he nearly drowned under my nose. I thought he was playing, but he actually couldn't get up out of the water. He immediately threw up, and I knew it was a close call. I HAD heard of secondary drowning, but didn't know much about it. I asked a retired fireman/EMT, and he misinformed me that it only happened in extreme cases (like life flight/trauma center -type rescues; longer time of being exposed to the water, etc). Thank God I know now.

Anonymous said...

Oh my goodness! I'm so sorry you had to go through this, but thanks a million for sharing it. Just reading this post, I had chills and I can't imagine what it would have been like for you. It's such a relief Ronin's all right. Don't beat yourself up over what happened; an incident like this is never anyone's fault, especially yours! I'll pray for your family!

The Leila BK Blog: Sensitive and Extraordinary Kids said...

Thank God a million times that you called you pediatrician and that she got back to you quickly! Thank God your son is okay! Thank you so much for sharing this. I just shared it on my Facebook timeline. God bless you all.

---------
Leila Boukarim

Find me and my writing on Smashwords at https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/433010

Wendy said...

What a relief that your sweet boy is on the mend!

I lost my older brother to drowning when I was 5 years old. He was 9...it was in the late 70's, and we believe he was actually the victim of pool drain entrapment. Nonetheless, this is a message I try to share far and wide to help save lives:

It's SO important that people understand that drowning is a silent act. I does not look like it's been depicted through TV and movies. Learning how to identify a drowning victim will help save lives...here is a great article that outlines specific signs to watch for.

There is also a link to a video of a real drowning in progress. As you will see in that video, there are dozens of people within a few feet of the victim who had no idea what was going on. http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/family/2013/06/rescuing_drowning_children_how_to_know_when_someone_is_in_trouble_in_the.html

Kudos to you for recognizing what was happening right away, before it was too late.

I hope everyone has a very safe Memorial Weekend, and anyone who sees this comment takes a few minutes to learn how to recognize drowning!

Anonymous said...

I am so glad this turned out in a positive ending. Check out www.infantseim.com. It is the best thing you could do to save your child from depending. It is not the throw them in method. Kids drowns even wearing floaties, in under 60 seconds, in less than an inch of water and it is totally preventable.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for sharing your very personal story. I have never heard of secondary drowning, and I will definitely be sharing this story with others so that they also become aware. Thank goodness your precious child is okay. Hugs to you for following your mommy instinct! Some mothers are often mocked for being paranoid... I for one would rather be paranoid than have regrets.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing this. I had never heard of second drowning either and I didn't hesitate to share this with my friends with children. Thank god your son is alright - I can't imagine the horror you both went through x

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for being vulnerable and sharing! I had never heard of secondary drowning! I am so glad to know this before we set up our pool this summer!

Anonymous said...

you are indeed a wonderful Mom. Things happen in life we do not now understand. The pool accident was not your fault, rather it was you that stopped him from drowning and who followed through when things didn't seem right. The Lord surely has wonderful things in store in this life for your son. God bless you, and thank you for "chosing" life.

Ellie said...

THANK YOU for sharing this! Just Wednesday there were a group of us at our neighborhood pool and a mom reached in and grabbed her son when he walked right in while we were right there - we all mentioned that our kids had gone under and we had to pull them out. None of us were overly concerned and certainly had no idea our children could have died when they seemed fine right afterwards! I will definitely be more aware and pass this information on to friends!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing your experience!! I never knew this and in fact last year my then 3 1/2 yo daughter fell in the deep end of the pool and my 5 yo swam to her and scooped her out...I am even more thankful there was no secondary drowning since I def put her to bed that night grateful she was okay but with no worries.

Marianne said...

I never heard of this before reading your post. Thank you for sharing your personal story. I will be sharing it with everyone I know. God bless you and Ronin.

Michelle said...

I am a grandmother of twelve and mother of seven and had never heard of secondary drowing before your post. Appreciate very much your sharing this. You are a very good mother and I am very unhappy with the ER doctor who talked to you as if you were a naughty child. You called your pediatrician as soon as you noticed your child was not acting normally and followed her instructions when she called. How could you know about secondary drowning when it is so rare and so realtively unknown? I read the article you provided the link to and it even says in that article it is a rare incidence but be aware of the possibility and take your child to the ER if they are not acting like themselves. Ronin is blessed that you are such a concientious mama.

Gina M Turley said...

wow! I am so happy that he is ok and thank you for sharing this. I would have never known..... Life is so precious and so fragile at all times.... God Bless

DefinitionOfAWife said...

Why on Earth do they not talk about this in First Aid courses?! I have taken first aid 3 separate times in the last 4 years and not once was this ever mentioned, even in my Infant and Child class!

I am so glad to hear that he is doing okay and thank you for the PSA! I would have had no idea otherwise!

Crystal said...

Thank you for sharing your experience! I'm happy to hear that your little one recovered from the accident. I am the owner of a nanny placement agency in Atlanta called Elite Metro Nannies. I can honestly say that through all of my water safety training, I have never heard of secondary drowning. I will definitely be sharing your story with my staff and nannies as we prepare for the summer months. God bless your family and thank you again for sharing.

Margaret said...

Thanks so much for sharing - I run a swim program and am involved with many children and had NEVER heard of this. You can bet I will pass this information on to every swim instructor and lifeguard we have. Thanks!!!

Mallory Churchwell said...

I don't know how I came across your blog but, I'm glad that I did. I had tears in my eyes reading this. My heart breaks that you had to go through all of that. I will tell you, I had never heard of secondary drowning either until about a month ago when my daughters baby sitter told me about it. My daughter (she is 13 months) likes to drink her bath water and she thinks it is so funny, before I knew what could happen, I would laugh at her because of how something so little was hilarious to her but now, I try to prevent her from drinking any of the bath water because one, there's no telling how many times she pee'd in it and two, she usually starts coughing after she takes a big swig. Thank you so much for sharing this because I know that a lot of parents don't know about secondary drowning. I'm so glad that your little man is okay!

Richard Clifford said...

My God! This summer, we need to watch all our kids when they're on the beach. Thank you.

G said...

THANK YOU FOR SHARING THIS - NOTHING BUT PRAISES FOR YOU DOING THAT!!!!

M said...

Thank you so much. I consider myself to be fairly well informed, and secondary drowning was nowhere on my radar. You may have saved lives with this post!

Christy said...

A friend shared your blog post on Facebook. Thank you so much for sharing your experience and that your little one will be ok. I had no clue about secondary drowning and am the owner of a pool frequented by lots of little ones. Your post will hopefully save many lives and make more parents of aware of the dangers. Thank you Thank you Thank you!

Alena Belleque said...

When my daughter was five weeks old, I was asked to chaperon a girls' youth retreat. The girls spent a great deal of time in the pool at the condo, and I brought my daughter in with me, the first time they went out.

We sat on the steps of the pool, just deep enough that she was resting in the water while cradled in my arms. A friend called to me, and since she was floating I stepped to the bottom of the pool, off the steps, just deep enough that my girl was still in the water. She loved it, and was looking around, kicking her feet, and cooing.

Just as I turned to sit back on the steps, two of the high school girls came too close, causing a wave to wash over my daughter's head and up into my face. I quickly retreated out of the pool, wiping water out of my eyes, and off of my daughter's face.

And then I realized she wasn't breathing. Her eyes were bugging out, her arms were thrown wide and rigid, and her mouth was wide open though nothing was going in or out. I immediately flipped her over and whacked her between the shoulder blades as they instruct in infant cpr, but nothing happened.

I did the first thing I could think of - I flipped her back over, covered her mouth with mine, and gave a quick, sharp suck/inhale.

She convulsed, and all the water (and a fair amount of spit up) came rushing out of her, and she started coughing and trying to scream, though it was barely audible between her coughs. I used my finger to clear her mouth just in case, then rushed for the locker rooms while calling over my shoulder "Somebody help! Help me!" Nobody heard me, or followed to see why I was running.

It took me only a couple of seconds to get to the showers, and stripped both of us out of our suits, and we stood under lukewarm water while I rubbed her back, and held her against my chest. She was shaking violently, and her breath was weak and unsteady. I yelled for help several times, with no reply.

I wrapped her in a thick towel, pulled on a shirt, and ran back to the condo. I again yelled for help as I passed the pool, and again, nobody heard me. When I got the condo, I discovered there was no phone (and I had no cell phone), so the only thing I could think to do was to strip us both, and get into bed, and try to nurse her. She nursed for a minute or two, and her breathing improved somewhat. Her hands and feet and lips were blue, so I pulled a blanket around us both, and held her against my chest, skin to skin.

And I prayed, HARD.

About two hours later, someone came to check on us. I told them what happened, and that we needed to go to the hospital, but they said that if it had been two hours, she was fine, and I just needed to stop worrying (blamed it laughingly on me being a first time mom). Another gal there was also a mom, and said the same thing. I was very worried, but didn't really know what to do and felt outnumbered (and had no phone to just call myself), so I just kept a very close eye on her, and stayed out of the pool the next two days.

She survived. She's a healthy two year old, now, and loves the water. But given that it took over 5 hours for her to resume her normal color and breathing, I think we had a very, very close call. I found out about secondary drowning months later, and bawled my head off thinking how very close we likely came to losing our little girl.

Anonymous said...

Wow I know this must have been really hard to share but THANK YOU SO MUCH for sharing it anyway. I bet this post will save lives. I never knew about secondary drowning. I'm so happy that your story turned out the way it did, and I thank you for sharing it

Anonymous said...

I am so glad that you listened to your inner mommy voice and that Ronin is okay! Thank you for going through the difficulty of sharing your story. I have lived in Florida, around water, my entire life and have never heard of secondary drowning. I always worry about my kiddos in the water when summer is here and am so thankful to be informed of secondary drowning!

Anonymous said...

Freaky! The same things happened to us a couple weeks ago. Luckily my son didn't experience secondary drowning or aspiration but he fell in the spa at my sisters house after dipping his feet in. Except I didn't even see until she jumped in fully clothed to pull him out. I was distracted also with ny younger daughter and nephew. Praise God your son is fine and mine also. Thank you for sharing.

Jordan Baker said...

Thanking God a million times that little Ronin is ok! Ohmygosh, I cannot even imagine that scenario. Thank you soooo very much for sharing this, I had NO idea about secondary drowning! Seems impossible that there's not more talk about this?! Anyways, so thankful you are all ok. PS - I miss your posts on insta ;) -Jordan (@oilsforwellness)

Unknown said...

Thank you for sharing your story, I have a story of my own that I hate to think about...my kids were in the bath doing just fine, I ran out o the room to grab the phone and by the time (10 seconds tops) I got back to the door my daughter told my my son was under the water! I will never forgive myself for thinking they would be ok for 10 seconds, he swallowed water but after he coughed it up he was fine. I was lucky and am very grateful he didn't have water trapped in his lungs. They are now 4,6 and I won't leave the room for 1 second during bath time now.

Chrystal said...

Thank you so much for sharing! I have spent my entire life around water and have never heard of this, but I will def share your story. I am also glad to hear that your son is fully recovered!

Nyima Bieber said...

I just wanted to say thank you so much for posting, I am sure this will save lives.

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