Millie’s story

“Millie was exhausted, just from trying to breathe. She could barely lift her little head off my chest.”

Like many parents, Emma didn’t know how serious asthma could be.

But the first time she watched Millie, her bright, giggly toddler looking up at her from a hospital bed, she knew they were in for the fight of their lives.

That’s the problem with asthma. Until you see someone you love, gasping for each breath, it’s impossible to understand just how deadly it can be.

“I felt so mean saying no all the time, but I was so scared every day of what might happen. I felt like I was over-reacting by continuously taking her to the hospital. I felt like I was in it all alone, that no one understood how much power the terror of asthma had over our lives. Everything we did as a family revolved around keeping Millie safe.”

Following another terrifying asthma attack, Emma remembered her mum talking about Asthma WA.

Desperate to put an end to the never-ending fear and doubt, she picked up the phone and was connected to Mel, one of our Respiratory Health Educators.

“In that moment I felt like things were spiralling out of control. I was terrified and exhausted.”

Mel was able to immediately help Emma by teaching her Asthma First Aid over the phone, giving her the tools and peace of mind to handle another attack should it occur. She also walked Emma through how to best give Millie her medications to help keep her out of danger.

Over the following weeks, Mel continued to help Millie and Emma identify triggers and understand her Asthma Action Plan to ensure she felt in complete control. Millie was also referred to our Children’s Asthma Hub (formerly Paediatric Respiratory Hub) for vital testing and consulted with a respiratory specialist.

“I can’t tell you how relieved I was to hear someone tell me precisely what to do. I was overwhelmed and confused by all the mixed advice. Mel made it all so clear. In one hour, she helped me calm the fear that had wracked me for the last three and a half years.”

Millie’s asthma used to be terrifying and unpredictable. Since talking to Mel at Asthma WA, Millie has not had a single attack.