Letter to Bri

I originally wrote this in 2015, in an effort to vent feelings about the murder of a young trans woman in a nearby neighborhood:

Dear Bri,

I drove by your house tonight after work and thought about you. I know I shouldn’t have. It’s creepy as fuck, and nothing good would come of it. I guess I was hoping I’d suddenly understand, that the proximity would allow me to see *what* and *why*, and help me to deal with this. Besides, it’s virtually in my neighborhood, and I couldn’t resist.

Maybe seeing the place you last stood would allow me to stop thinking about you. You were on my mind all day, and my work suffered as a result. I told lots of people about you this morning. They all gasped and said, “How horrible!” but I don’t know if they cried like I did. I don’t even understand how I can be grieving for you when we haven’t even met. Just who the hell do I think I am? I don’t think I’m allowed to feel this way.

Maybe it’s because I stopped going to that support group and sitting in a circle with the rest of those people. I felt like I didn’t need them anymore. I had my friends and family as support. I didn’t drop out completely though. I stayed active on the internet, giving encouragement where I could and siphoning perspective from others. This¬†(¬†http://lexiecannes.com/2015/02/15/trans-woman-murdered-in-ohio-another-tortured-on-video-then-killed-in-brazil) is where I learned about what happened between you and your father.

Maybe I wish I’d known you. Maybe we would have become friends. Maybe you would have been elsewhere on Friday night. Maybe I feel like we’re the same person.

I know this isn’t about me. It’s about you and your friends and family. But I had to get this out. I feel selfish for it, but I don’t know that I had a choice.

For reasons I don’t understand, I know I’ll never forget you. Rest in peace Bri.