Wednesday, June 1, 2011


Dancer and I were on the train yesterday, en route to buying a million dollars' worth of pointe shoes. Two women came on, one rather obviously pregnant, with three little girls. The women sat across the aisle from each other, in front of us, so it was impossible not to hear what they were saying. And it quickly became apparent that they were talking about a murder. The murder of someone they knew. Lydia (whoever Lydia was) might be unable to go to her graduation because they couldn't get into the house to get her clothes, since the police still had the apartment blocked off.

After a while, the older, non-pregnant woman called over to me, "I know you're listening! You know that killing over the weekend of the 22-year old? Well this little girl here is her daughter." The daughter, it turned out, was Lydia. She was slated to graduate from kindergarten.

The adults continued to talk, and Lydia periodically piped up to clarify details. "No, it was my grandpa who found the body!" she said at one point.

The non-pregnant woman said to the pregnant one, "She's too old for herself! That girl knows too much!"

The pregnant woman whispered, "You know what she asked me? She asked who's the daddy of the baby in my belly!"

"Did you tell her?" the other woman asked.

"Naw. He doesn't want me to tell her," replied the first.

"Well I'ma tell her! I'm that baby's grandma, and she just lost her mama, and she outta know she's got a sister to look forward to! Hey Lydia..."

Dancer and I sat there, trying to grasp the ungraspable. I've written before about how we don't know what others are going through, and while part of my brain flipped over and over thinking Someone shot her mama! That little girl doesn't have a mother! another part reminded me that if the women hadn't been talking loudly in front of us, there was nothing to make this little girl stand out from any other. And we wouldn't have known to pray for Lydia.


  1. I feel for that Lydia. Sheesh. What a mind-boggling conversation to overhear.

  2. Public transportation makes for interesting social encounters, doesn't it? My two year old is always asking "Who's that?" of people we see at Target. I can't imagine the questions she'd have if we were riding the train with them for fifteen minutes! So overwhelming to hear what you heard, as well. But now we're all praying for her too!