Mom Warns Parents to Stop & Think Twice After Her 'Older' Child Choked on a Common Snack

Laura Chambers
Facebook/Laura Lou Chambers

Few circumstances can make you feel more helpless than if your child is suddenly choking and you feel powerless to save them. This tends to be less of a worry as a little one gets "older," but that's exactly why Laura Chambers is sharing the terrifying story of the day she gave her 4-year-old daughter some grapes to snack on and the little one began to choke. Thanks to some quick thinking, Chambers' partner managed dislodge the grape from her daughter's throat, but now the mom is urging other parents to take caution the next time they fix their child -- and not just baby or toddler -- a snack.

  • Chambers assumed that her almost-5-year-old Olivia was old enough to eat full grapes, but she was heartbroken to learn she was wrong.

    In her August 8 Facebook post, the mom explained that when she prepared a handful of grapes and some dried cereal as a quick snack for her kids, she thought nothing of it. It wound up being a startling reminder, however, to always be mindful when preparing food for small kids, even if your child has outgrown the toddler stage. 

    "It was the first time since hearing about that poor child who died chocking on a grape that I didn’t cut them in half," the mom wrote. "I figured -- she’s almost 5, she isn’t the kind of kid to shovel food and choke, and I was rushing to finish cleaning the house."

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  • Moments later, Chambers heard the most heart-stopping sound: Her daughter was choking.

    She says she'd been vacuuming but had switched it off when she'd reached the top of the stairs and heard the unmistakable sound. 

    "I knew in an instant what had happened," she wrote. "I ran to her. She couldn’t breathe."

    Olivia had apparently popped a grape in her mouth seconds before it became lodged in her throat. 

    "I turned her over and hit her as hard as I could between the shoulder blades and still nothing," Chambers recalled. "She was looking me dead in the eyes and her lips turned blue as she couldn’t breathe at all."

  • Finally, Chambers' partner, Jamie, performed "some maneuver on her that sent [the grape] flying across the room."

    All at once, relief flooded the mom, who just seconds before thought she was watching her child die.

    According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, foods such as whole grapes should absolutely be kept away from kids younger than 4. If you are going to serve the fruit to kids, the academy recommends slicing grapes into small pieces to prevent choking.

    In the end, Chambers said that although her story has a happy ending, it still hurts to know how close things were to disaster. That's why she's sharing her story far and wide, reminding parents online that they need to be extra careful when feeding their little ones. So far, it seems they're listening -- to date, the post has racked up over 60,000 shares and counting.

    "I lay here now watching her sleep," her post continued. "I’ve cried most [of] the night and my heart hurts as I look at her chest where there are still nail indentations from where she clawed at her throat for air. PLEASE PLEASE let this be a reminder to all the parents out there -- my life nearly changed forever last night all because of my carelessness."