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My Story

By Elizabeth S. Knight
11th May 1998

My son died somewhere between 6:30 and 6:39 in the morning on Dec. 14, 1997. He was 1 month and 20 days old. He had nursed at 6:00am and was as healthy as can be. At 6:30 I shut off my alarm clock and he was still fine. At 6:39 when I opened my eyes he was dead. I knew he could not have been dead very long because when I preformed CPR he was still warm. He always slept in my bed just like my other son. He was in a sleeper and not covered by any blankets. I figured the sleeper would keep him warm enough and adding blankets would just overheat him. I always moved him away from me when he was done nursing so I would stand no chance of rolling onto him. I was always current on SIDS prevention and did it all. I had a rare chance to understand there was truly nothing I could do. I did everything right, I even had the presence of mind to perform infant CPR. If I did not have that chance I would drive myself crazy with "what ifs". A week before I nursed him through a horrible cold. He couldn't even vocalize a cry or whimper. My husband and I took shifts staying up so he would not be unattended. When he died he had completely recovered from the cold and we felt it safe to sleep again. In fact he had been to the doctor 4 days before his death. We just happened to be getting up early for church that day. So I thank God for the provisions made. If I had to lose him I have the small solace knowing I could do nothing more. The mixed blessing of being right there gave me the first hand knowledge I could do nothing and I also know he could not be resuscitated. SIDS is like a thief in the night. It makes no sound or evidence until it's sad task has come to completion. I was not asleep when it happened. I was just in the state of debating getting out of bed. So if he moved or struggled in this I would have known. Thank you.

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