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Controlling poison

Amy, at Amy’s Humble Musings, posted about a recent call she made to poison control. Thankfully everything turned out okay, and she maintains her usual great sense of humor about the situation. Many of the commentors shared their own poison control stories. It seems like you can’t escape your children’s early years wthout at least one call to Poison Control. We haven’t.

And some people, like me, have called Poison Control on themselves.

When I was pregnant with Aidan, we called. Did I ingest Lysol? Was I overcome with ammonia fumes? Did I take too many prenatal vitamins? No. I ate an apple.

In the process of apple-eating, I accidently bit into several little black seeds which were clustered together. They were bitter and I tried to spit out the acrid taste. The word ARSENIC suddenly sprang to mind. Don’t apple seeds harbor arsenic, the same stuff Cary Grant’s ancient lace-wearing aunts used to put lonely men out of their misery? My unborn baby was inside. I could see the arsenic absorbing into my bloodstream. I envisioned it coursing through my body and into the umbilical cord of my baby. I told hubby what I had done—ingested apple seeds. He seemed unimpressed until I reminded him how apple seeds are little miniature bombs, loaded with nature’s own chemical warfare. I started sobbing.

He still wasn’t properly concerned, until I hysterically demanded he call Poison Control to see what the next step should be. He dialed. I curled into a ball on the couch, convinced I had done something horrible.

I have no idea what the person on the other end of the line looked like. I am pretty sure he or she was digging fingernails into his or her thigh to stop themselves from erupting into convulsive laughter at my expense. The Poison Controller assured hubby that all was well and I hadn’t just poisoned my baby or myself with apple seeds. I don’t think I quite believed it, but eventually I calmed down enough to give birth to her several months later, no harm done.

14 comments to Controlling poison

  • Only you could describe an appleseed in such a menacing way. Is there really arsenic in there?

    My only poison control call was for myself also. When trying to get pregnant with Peter, I dropped my basal body temp thermometer on the tile bathroom floor and it shattered. Little balls of mercury were everywhere. Hubby insisted on vacuuming them up, which I didn’t think was a good idea. Sure enough, the all-knowing internet said the last thing you should do was vacuum them, as it disperses the mercury into the air or something horrid like that. So I called poison control to make sure I wasn’t going to die a wretched death from mercury poisoning. Four years later, I’m still here, so I guess I’m going to be ok. 🙂

  • lol

    I’ve actually heard some health food nuts say that we really should eat the entire apple…seeds, core and all…that it would be better for us and that’s where most of the “good stuff” is found! 😛

  • Now who’s living whose life? Not that I’ve called on apple seeds, but get this story:

    I wasn’t pregnant, I just had a baby in the house. I had recently discovered e-bay, and I was planning to decorate my new top-of-kitchen-cupboard space with eclectic decorative items. On e-bay, I found a statue of a coffee seller, antique, Italian. I bid for it, bought it, had it shipped. And then I began to worry . . . if it was old, suppose the glaze was lead based? Suppose it flaked, and some of that lead-based paint leaked into the air of my house? Suppose my baby inhaled or ingested it, and consequently developed brain damage, nervous system abnormalities, immediate poisoning? Who KNEW where that statue had been? With paper towels, I carried it to the car. I gingerly drove it to Goodwill. I washed my hands thoroughly when I got home, and decontaminated my steering wheel. Disaster averted, once again.

    I’m going to post that story on my blog in the hopes of eliciting more to normalize myself.

  • mopsy

    Laura and Shayne—thanks for your stories! They make me feel a little better about being so over-the-top paranoid about the apple seeds.

  • amy

    on one very bad day, my daughter (18 months old) drank water she had pooped in, ate a dead bug, and had a cigarette butt (from the ground) in her mouth. i called poison control three times! i kept waiting for DFACS to knock on the door.

  • For real? Apple seeds have arsenic in them? Wow, I learn something every day.

    One day I managed to call Poison Control twice by 9:30 a.m. (for the kids, not me). I figured DHS would show up at my house later that day!

  • LOL!!!!!! that’s hysterical!!!!

  • Funny, funny! I once called when my daughter (about 9 months old) ingested Johnson Baby Shampoo-it was my first time around as a mommy, so what can I say?

  • I called once, not in panic but because the bottle said so, when Sydney nibble on my deoderant. The lady on the line was quite helpful: Nothing serious. Possible side effects? A dry mouth.

    Made me laugh.

  • Stephanie, NO WAY…we’ve called about deoderant too! My son thought it looked like an ice cream cone.

    Mopsy, thanks for coming by my blog!

  • hehehe –
    scott made me call the other day because i took two painkillers, two allergy pills, and had some wine that night. of cousre they thought i was trying to kill myself. of course he told me if i didn’t call i could end up just dying in my sleep! eek!

    now i’m on the list for suicide watch, i’m sure!

    too funny.

  • bro-de-mopsy

    A friend of mine’s Grandmother used to eat the entire apple – stems, seeds – the whole thing. So either there is no danger, or she was somehow immune to arsenic.

    But seriously — why would you eat the entire apple?

    On a related note – a good friend of Liz’s likes to eat lemons. And I don’t just mean slicing it and sucking out the juices. She eats lemons, rind and all.

  • Ashe

    Actually, apple seeds house a compound that will break down into hydrogen cyanide, not arsenic. The seeds will usually pass through your digestive system unscathed (unless of course you’re chewing them up.) Regardless, you’d have to masticate and ingest bags of apple seeds a day in order for any toxic effects to be seen on the body.

    AND… there’s nothing wrong with eating the core of the apple. Excluding the peel and core of apples from the diet almost halves the amounts of Vitamin C and dietary fiber available in the apple.

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