Today gets a second post...it is now 9:55pm EST and the date is January 11, 2008. What makes today so special? It is my son's 28th birthday. I have been thinking about him most of the day, so I figured this would be a good time to talk about that. There was this joke in the family when I was pregnant with him, about when he would be born...his daddy was a huge football fan (the Dolphins were HIS team) and our wedding anniversary was on January 10th, so it was a toss up which he would choose - the super bowl or our 4th anniversary. Well, we were sorta half right, turns out he wanted his own day, he held on for 1 hour and 38 minutes into the 11th. So, he and his daddy watched the Rams beat the Steelers in the super bowl together...that was pretty kewl. That was only the first time they sat together staring at the TV...his daddy liked cartoons almost as much as he did, so they watched them together a lot.
Blond hair, blue eyes and a smile that could make you grin just to see it...that kid was just too cute for words...not that I am at all biased - lol.
I find it hard to talk about him now...no one really wants to listen, ya know. My family pretty much all left the state and closed the door behind them, so it's kinda hard. But here goes anyway...
When he was four he was diagnosed with Hypertrophic cardiomyopothy with arterial compromise. Awfully big words for someone so small. Basically what that means is that he was very ill, his heart didn't beat correctly and when it did it would squeeze the coronary artery closed. He also had a hole in his heart, grade four heart murmur. Pretty serious stuff. His pediatrician contacted a friend of his, a pediatric heart surgeon who had recently retired and asked him to come take a look. He said no, but he sent his replacement, a really good young doctor, who was willing to do surgery to help stop that squeezing. Open heart surgery in 1985 was not really all that common, and even less common on children...it was a bit stressful not knowing what was going to happen, but when the Drs. (there were two, the young one and one on staff at Shands) came in to speak with us the night before and the young Dr. asked if he could pray with us, my stress level plummeted. The surgery went without a hitch, what a relief...we were really hoping that meant no more heart attacks...praying would be a better word. Things did look good, we went home soon after and aside from lots of meds every day, it was all good. He couldn't run and play like other kids his age, but that was okay most of the time, he sorta understood what was up. Things went well for a while, we got him enrolled in school, took a trip down south to visit his grandparents (he got to FLY!!) and he got a pony lol, what more could a kid want?
It's funny just how much we let go of memories if there is no one to share them with, I can't seem to recall, off the top of my head, all the little details from that time. I should be able to, it was really important, but I can't. I have it written down somewhere, I'll have to go look it up soon, but not right now.
Anyway, on the morning of Nov. 6th 1985, I got him up to go to school and he wasn't feeling so great, looked a little pale, not too bad. His daddy came home from work and after a few minutes said that I should probably take him in to get him checked, not good to take a chance. So I got him dressed, called my mom and asked her to go with me. On the way into town (we live 7 miles out, it was pretty much all woods at that time) he started getting worse, by the time we made it to town he was doing really bad, we went to the ER and they called the ambulance to transport him the 20 miles or so to Shands. I placed him into the arms of the EMT (who was a friend) told him I loved him, got in the car and we followed the ambulance into Gainesville. That was the last time I ever got to say those words to him - while he was still alive. It seems that heart attacks were not the only possible outcome of his condition, strokes were also. He died that day. He was only 5 years old.
It was a really long time ago, and I have come a really long way since then...and I still can't tell this story without tears. But I will continue to tell it as long as I am alive - because that is the only way I know how to make sure that he is not forgotten...he wasn't long for this world, but he touched a lot of people in a lot of ways. Not the least of who, was me.
In Loving Memory of
Shane Michael Moss
1/11/80 -- 11/6/85