He Should Be Here


Life is not fair, and sometimes there simply are not any reasons for what happens. Holding my son in my arms while his heart slowed and then stopped was not fair. Leaving the hospital with an empty car seat with my son in the morgue was not fair. Having to pick an outfit to bury my son in was not fair.

No one should have to go through what my husband and I did. I wouldn’t wish this pain on my worst enemy. But the truth is, I don’t understand the unfairness that surrounds me now. I don’t understand why God wanted Alex and not someone else’s little boy. I can’t wrap my head around what I did in my life to deserve this level of pain.  

I now live in the “should be.”

There are so many things that should be.

I went for my six-week check-up after my C-section and was sitting in the doctor’s office. A woman came in with a newborn, and a couple started asking her how old the baby was. She said six-weeks old. I lost it. I should be bringing my six-week-old to my appointment. I shouldn’t be crying in a waiting room.

I recently went back to work. On the way to the train, I walk pass the daycare Alex should be attending. On that first day back, I cried during the entire walk to the train because I saw parents dropping off their babies, something I should be doing for the first time. 

We attended a party—a party I knew I wasn’t ready for. Our friends were there, and all their children were playing in the living room and running around the house. As I looked at these kids, all I could think was Alex should be here. He should be here whether he was happy and playing, or screaming and crying. He should just be here. 

I go running in the park and have to turn my head when a jogging stroller goes by. I should own one, and Alex should be in it. 

I go grocery shopping and change my position in the checkout to avoid a baby nearby. I should be shopping with Alex, and he should be in the car seat on the cart. 

I go to a restaurant and make sure to sit where I can’t see any babies. Alex should be with us, sitting in my lap, like the baby and mom behind me.

We recently converted his room to a spare bedroom. We had to disassemble the crib and put it away. I told my husband this was not fair; he should be here and we shouldn’t be doing this. We should be changing his diaper and watching him sleep.  

Somehow, I am able to sleep through the night, most nights. I should be exhausted; I should be craving sleep. I should be complaining that he keeps us up all night like every other parent does. 

Every day there is something else I wish Alex was here for. I know he is not—because life is just not fair.