So I read this article today, which asks if death is bad for you. I have always said no. The quote above is from Dylan Thomas, This Side of the Truth. I wrote a term paper on it in high school and it has stuck with me. The deal, of course, is that there is no good or bad death - it's all the same in the end, or as my son was quoted as saying "We all fall short in the end."
So why do I feel bad about my son dying? For myself, of course, because I miss him. But I also feel bad for him, though not because it's better to be alive than dead, but because of what I failed to convey to him, because of all the times he felt lacking, because of his self-doubt. I want to make it all better, but I can't, because he's gone.
I don't know where I read this - I thought it was Dostoyevsky, but I couldn't find it in The Brothers Karamazov, it could have been C.S. Lewis - that heaven, if it is to exist as a valid concept, must go back in time and remove the pain that was suffered by innocents. That's what I want to do, but I can't. I can't make amends.