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Blue Attack Condition

Molly didn’t spare us in the first two years. One of the challenges she rolled our way was blue attack condition. This only started when she was about 15months, after we started her in a creche. I can see now that this was triggered by separation anxiety – they were panic attacks really and happened when she got even the slightest knock, or got very upset.

The creche told us what was happening after the second episode and I drove straight to the GP, holding my breath all the way. He identified the condition straight away and told me it was common enough and kids usually grow out of it by age 5 or 6. That felt like an eternity!!

It’s a very frightening thing to hear your kid suddenly go quiet (the first sign) and then watch her face going blue, her eyes roll and go almost black and her body start convulsing. Tests were done in the hospital to rule out epilepsy, after she had three attacks in one day, and the pediatric team put us at complete ease and told us what to do – the essential thing was to lie her flat immediately, to keep the flow of blood going to the brain and protect her from falling and hurting herself – all the while talking to her in a calm voice!. As soon as the attack had passed we had to reassure her for a few seconds and then walk away. They warned against cuddling her for too long as some kids can see this as a reward and can bring on attacks for the attention.

Once we had this reassurance that she wasn’t ‘in danger’, that she would start breathing again, we relaxed with it. Only if she held her breath for longer than a minute had we to bring her back to the hospital.

We made the decision to take her out of the creche, as she just didn’t seem to be able to handle the larger environment, and were so blessed to get her a place with a very experienced and loving lady that minds a handful of kids in her home. She took a while to settle, as the memory of the creche was still too fresh, but she thrived in a this homely environment. Feeling secure and happy again the attacks became very infrequent.

She is four now and has completely grown out of it….but her insecurity with new, larger and boisterous groups of kids remains – she has never been comfortable or confident in playgrounds or places like Formula For Fun – she likes her own space, and that’s just fine!


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