(03-07-2014, 10:14 PM)DeepBreathing Wrote: On a more serious note, I do sometimes wonder if my central apnea is hereditary. AFAIK nobody else in the family has been diagnosed with apnea of any sort. However we lost two babies to sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) many years ago, and I am tormented by the thought I passed on a bad gene. The last time I enquired (some years ago) nobody knew what really causes SIDS, so there was no genetic test I could do to find out.
I read this yesterday Paul, and it has taken me until now to reply. I lost a child to SIDS too. There is no way to explain away the hurt and sorrow of that event. It has been 50 years now, but the memories are still quite clear.
I have wondered, since starting on the CPAP trail, if perhaps my father had Sleep Apnea. I remember how he would get drowsy behind the wheel of the car, and how he wouldn't make it past the first show on tv before he dozed off. He watched "Hit Parade." That was his favorite. And of course I now wonder if perhaps my beautiful son inherited the sleep apnea tendency from me.
When we lost our child, I asked a personal friend of mine to perform an autopsy. He was the most respected Pathologist in Phoenix at that time and I knew he, if no one else, could provide me with the answers we felt we so much needed. As you might expect his findings were really more about what had not happened than what did happen. With tears in his eyes too, he told me "we just don't know why this happens. It's just that sometimes the little ones go to sleep and forget to breathe."
Not much has changed over the years. They explore this theory, then that. Make the babies sleep on their backs, then no, make them sleep on their tummies. But I don't think they really understand this any better than my Pathologist friend did. Aluminum causes it. Maybe not.
There is something I have come to understand though. My son died after living a short and completely love filled life. How could you ask for anything more really? All he ever knew was love and being loved. There was no room in his being for "guilt." That was my lesson. "Guilt" is a learned trait. It is something that we invent as we go through life. It has no validity as a "natural" emotion. Your child and mine only knew beauty, love, compassion.... None of the resentment, hatred, bigotry, guilt things that come later. They knew what they were born with and what they lived with for their short lives. We best honor them when we get back to that world of caring and loving for all God's creatures, here and beyond. That's a tall order; one that I'm not all that great at doing yet even at the age of 71. But one which I figure I'll continue to try to acheive until I get it right. Like my son did.
I had two sons following my little one, and they are grown men now with nearly grown families of their own. I wish I could instill in them the truths of pure love demonstrated by their little brother and elder uncle. But like you I find I sometimes have creeping thoughts of guilt over this, or any number of issues in my life. Here today, in front of this forum of friends, I remind myself and I ask you to join me in releasing and renouncing any of those illegitmate feelings, those emotions we learned but were never ours by birthright and simply remember our little ones and the joy for life they held for a short while.