Sometimes, nothing is more terrifying than seeing a "hey" followed by a period.

Call me paranoid, but it tends to be one of the first things someone says to you when you're about to receive some unpleasant news. For someone in a long distance relationship, getting a text like that could be the beginning of the end.

When comic artist SisiwAko and her boyfriend broke up, she wanted to deal with the heartache in the only way she knew.


"I was happy the whole time I was with that person, so I wanted to draw them so I wouldn't forget."

In the words of Carrie Fisher, shared recently by Meryl Streep: "Take your broken heart, make it into art." That's exactly what SisiwAko is doing in this powerful comic.

Comic by SisiwAko, where it originally appeared. Used here with permission.

Sharing our experiences is a valuable way to encourage empathy, even across the longest of distances.

Art has always been a conduit for expression and therapy. From the masters of painting, to kids with their journals, to professional art therapy, web comics, and even socially conscious media companies. We should all have a medium to express our feelings and to accept the experiences of those around us.

The reaction to the piece has been overwhelmingly positive, "People who have had similar experiences have messaged me ... from around the globe and it's been wonderful to hear the words of support and encouragement," she says.

Because of the demand, SisiwAko has started creating a follow-up comic while continuing her studies in game art. Her global fanbase is excited for the next chapter and we're all rooting for her — no matter how far away we may be from her.

​SisiwAko is a comic artist living in the Philippines. You can find her stories and illustrations here.

Photo by CDC on Unsplash

When schools closed early in the spring, the entire country was thrown for a loop. Parents had to figure out what to do with their kids. Teachers had to figure out how to teach students at home. Kids had to figure out how to navigate a totally new routine that was being created and altered in real time.

For many families, it was a big honking mess—one that many really don't want to repeat in the fall.

But at the same time, the U.S. hasn't gotten a handle on the coronavirus pandemic. As states have begun reopening—several of them too early, according to public health officials—COVID-19 cases have risen to the point where we now have more cases per day than we did during the height of the outbreak in the spring. And yet President Trump is making a huge push to get schools to reopen fully in the fall, even threatening to possibly remove funding if they don't.

It's worth pointing out that Denmark and Norway had 10 and 11 new cases yesterday. Sweden and Germany had around 300 each. The U.S. had 55,000. (And no, that's not because we're testing thousands of times more people than those countries are.)

The president of the country's largest teacher's union had something to say about Trump's push to reopen schools. Lily Eskelsen Garcia says that schools do need to reopen, but they need to be able to reopen safely—with measures that will help keep both students and teachers from spreading the virus and making the pandemic worse. (Trump has also criticized the CDCs "very tough & expensive guidelines" for reopening schools.)

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