You had asthma from the time you were a baby. Of course, as a baby, they didn’t diagnose it as asthma. But we were giving you breathing treatments off and on from the time you were 4 months old.
You seemed healthy though. You were always so active. You loved the outdoors where you climbed trees like a monkey. You played soccer and kept up with everyone.
Your asthma just seemed to act up when you caught a bug or were affected by allergies, not by running around thankfully.
So when you told me your chest hurt once, about a month or two before your death, I asked, “Does it feel like asthma?” you said, “I don’t know.” And we left it at that. I figured if it was something more, you’d mention it again.
You didn’t until the night before your death. i don’t know if it was the same “hurt.” But that evening, around 6pm, I told you to do the dishes. you said, “my chest hurts.” And I chalked it up to a) asthma and b) being not in the mood for dishes. I didn’t even ask you if you thought it was asthma. I simply said, “Well, it’s a good thing you don’t have many dishes to do then.”
At the age of 13, I figured if it was something different or if it continued to bother you, you would mention it again.
You died in your sleep from an unknown heart condition called Viral Myocarditis. A virus attacked your heart.
Why didn’t I immediately assume something was wrong when you told me your chest hurt?
Mostly because you (and your siblings) have always been a bit hypochondriac-ish. And I didn’t want to make you worse by showing that I too am a hypochondriac (of sorts).
Your younger brother sometimes used to say his chest hurt (before you died) and we took him to the dr and it was heartburn/indigestion.
Who thinks that their 13 year old son is going to die in their sleep?
Why did I screw up? I could have saved you if I had made a big deal about your chest hurting. Why? I will have this guilt forever.