Dear Ba, 

Here’s what I remember..

It was Monday, May 11th12020 around 8am.

I woke up and recorded my dream. It was a good dream.2one where I met one of my sheros, Tavi GevinsonThen I heard a knock on the front door. 

J called out my nickname, Y.

Strange that she’s here. And at this time of day. Maybe she’s just in the neighborhood, stopping by. Maybe we can go for a socially distant walk. That would be nice.

I went upstairs, opened the door. J was wearing a surgical mask and bright orange rubber gloves. Behind her, by the curb was her boyfriend, coming out of his car and opening the trunk. I was happy to see her.

Hey J, what’s going on? I asked.

Mom and I have been calling you, we’ve been trying to get a hold of you all morning.3Oh right I heard the landline phone ringing earlier, I just thought it was a relentless robocall, and went back to my dream

Oh sorry, I was asleep. Why, what’s going on?

Then I noticed her eyes, the only part of my face I could see, it was swollen and red.


Dad died

He killed himself


Those two lines.

It hit me. 4No, it struck me.

I put them together


Then I saw you in my mind.

Like I never had before, 

collapsed and lifeless.


My face raked and twisted. 

I placed my hands on the sides of my head, 

to hold those words together 

and the image of you 

that I didn’t want to see.


Shock, pain, disbelief, I felt it all at once.



I screamed


I screamed


It was guttural, the sounds coming out of me.

A small part of me was aware but didn’t care that I was waking up the whole neighborhood to my nightmare.



How did he die?

I asked J


He stabbed himself in the heart


More words

That hurt.



Then I saw you. 

I saw your face, sad and in pain

I saw your two hands

to your heart

holding tight

I saw the knife.


I felt your pain. 

Not from the knife.

But the point leading up to it.

And my heart splintered.



How sad were you??5And how did I not see this?


I saw J’s eyes

Seeing the anguish in my face

She quickly took off her mask and gloves.

And opened her arms for me

I held her tiny frail body so tightly, like I never had before.

I held her as if I was holding you



I asked her through my sobs and tears.

WHY did he do it?

WHY did he do it?

WHY did he do it?




Why Ba?

Why did you do it?