2 Months Ago

It was a Thursday. I woke up earlier than I normally do and wasn’t feeling very well. After a morning trip to the doctors office I found myself back at my house. I had already missed my morning classes so I figured that I should at least pull myself together and try to make it to an appointment and my 3:30 class. I’ve had strep plenty of times and I can honestly say that this time it felt so different. I had showered and was actually starting to feel okay, still sick, but with it enough to push through my afternoon. Suddenly, it just felt wrong. It’s horrible to admit, but the thought crossed my mind to call in and say I wasn’t going to make my appointment because someone died. This isn’t a thought I normally have so I can only attribute it to the idea that someone was intervening, knowing that I would be getting the call that was to follow. I never did get the chance to call in.

It was a little after 1:00. My phone rang, echoing through my room. My door was opened and for whatever reason, all my roommates were home and upstairs, something that never happens. As I went to answer I noticed the number, obviously someone from Connecticut, assuming it was a relative whose number I neglected to save, I picked up.

A detective? Why is a detective calling me? Southington? I am trying to remember where in Connecticut Southington is, I don’t think I even know anyone who lives there. Is this Lori? He wants to talk to my mom, oh okay weird.

“No, this is her Daughter though”… Yes, yes that’s my Dad, Thomas Baranowski. Oh no, what did he do? How much trouble is he in?

“No, no…what” It took me a second to really realize what I had just heard. At that point my “No” must have been more audible than I thought and my roommates were in my room now. I hand the phone off because now the only words I can form are, “he’s dead, my Dad is dead, he can’t be dead“.

The rest is blurry. I call people, my mom, my stepdad, they don’t answer. I call aunts and other family who need to know, who I need to tell so maybe one of them can tell me there has been a mistake. No one tells me I’ve been misinformed.

I pace back and forth through the upstairs. My roommates are all in another room trying to figure out how to reach my mom. I fall to the ground a couple times and continue pacing when I get the strength to stand again.

I call him. I call him again, and again, and again. There was never an answer. There never was going to be.