There was a moment at work tonight when I had to stop and catch my breath....literally. Right now, I'm sitting here with a sore throat and tomorrow, my ribs might be a little tender, too.
The circumstances were these:
1. I was at work.
2. I was at the customer service desk
3. My immediate manager and some guests were around
4. I was laughing
5. Then I wasn't
Thanks to my manager being at the service desk with me, I lived through today. He had to perform the Heimlich maneuver on me to dislodge a rather large peppermint. You know the feeling when something gets stuck in your throat, but you can get it out? Well, that's what I thought had happened until I stopped breathing. All I was able to do was wave my arms to get him to help me out. Because we normally joke around he didn't think I was serious at first. He just kind of patted my back until he realized I really needed his help. Apparently, my face started turning blue. I kept thinking, as he was giving me the Heimlich, "I hope that he knows how to do this. What if he doesn't? He'll have to call someone else over and I can't scream for help! I might die!"
When the mint finally popped out I just buried my face in my hands and started crying. I left the floor and made my way back to my office where my friend and coworker was. She was a little stunned until I explained what happened. Not that she wasn't open arms when she saw that I was crying.
You know that part in the movie Ground Hog Day where Billy Murray gives the mayor the Heimlich maneuver? You know how the food just pops out of his mouth onto the table? Well, that's exactly what the mint did. I mean, that thought kind of popped into my head right after I saw the mint land on the floor. I was kind of weird, but it was a relief. So, if you are ever in doubt of what happens, it just kind of shoots out of your mouth if the person has done it correctly. I also forgot to take advantage of the 3-second-rule. Yeah, can you believe that?
What I've learned from this is that I will never take mints from someone I don't like in the first place. I will not laugh while sucking on some kind of hard candy or eating any kind of food ever again. Drinking water does not help my throat. I get a bit hysterical when looking death in the face. I lived and I'm grateful to be here.