Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Did You Know?

Did you know that Murphy's Oil isn't particularly harmful if ingested? Well, I didn't know that either until about a week ago when a poison control operator, nurse, medic, gyno and police officer all told me that it wasn't. Why did a poison control operator, nurse, medic, gyno and police officer offer me up this information? That my friends and family is an interesting story...
I was preparing to clean my hardwood floors so I took out the Murphy's Oil and left it on the dinning room table while I picked up the mop. At the time, Benjamin was playing in the living room (the room right next to the dinning room) with his Diego Rescue Station. When I turned around to pick up the Murphy's Oil Squirt and Mop, I was stunned into silence. My legs went numb and I was paralyzed for a brief moment as I saw my son squirting some Murphy's Oil in his mouth like a marathon racer. As I ran over to stop the scene, he made a wretched face and said, "bletch!" I knew I couldn't panic but I didn't know what to expect. Would Benjamin pass out? Would he begin vomiting uncontrollable? What would happen?
I thought I should call Poison Control first but I had removed everything off my refrigerator, including the Poison Control number, when we were trying to sell the house and all the fridge stuff never made its way back. As the seconds ticked by, I thought I needed to do SOMETHING. So I did what I thought was best and I called 911. I explained the situation and was told a police officer would be arriving shortly (I wish I had a tape of that call and wonder if I was as calm as Sully - NOT).
While I waited for a police officer and medic to arrive, I held Benjamin tight who just wanted to run around and play. The "not knowing" was killing me - I then took the number off the back of the Murphy's Oil and called their customer service line. I was transferred to the Poison Control Center in Pittsburgh. I explained to the woman what had happened and she said, "oh, don't worry it is just soap." My reply, "are you sure it is Murphy's Squirt and Mop?" PC woman, "yes, I am sure -- the worst that will happen is he might throw up." I was relieved but still a bit unsure. Just then the cop arrived.
The cop asked me a few questions and played with Benjamin and petted Bruin. He also reassured me that he was going to be okay. He then proceeded to tell me that a woman drank a whole bottle of Windex in an attempt to kill herself and believe it or not she was fine - unstable but fine. Alright, so maybe it was going to be okay. Benjamin announced the arrival of the ambulance.
The medics came in the house and asked a few questions as well. The medic told me that most of the time they just spit it out because they don't like the taste and if there was a larger amount ingested he might vomit.
In addition to the reassurance, I needed to sign-off on a form that says I refused medical treatment for Benjamin. I then asked, "in your professional opinion should I take my son to the hospital." She looked at me then looked at Ben who was running around in a circle laughing -- she said, "that kid? I don't think so." With that, I signed the paper and they left. I then received a call from a nurse at Colgate-Palmolive asking me if everything was okay. She also told me that the worst would be puke. If I hadn't asked enough people -- later that day, at a doctor's appointment, I asked my OB/GYN if I should be concerned and she told me the worst that could happen is some diarrhea or puke.
I learned a few lessons that day and here they are:
  1. Murphy's Oil is just soap
  2. Murphy's Oil if ingested will only cause vomiting or diarrhea
  3. Keep anything and everything out of reach of Benjamin in order that he doesn't hurt himself or I don't have a heart attack
  4. I should have a maid so I don't have to clean and have harmful/potentially harmful things in my son's reach (Wally it is for the best...)

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