Baopu #112: Grieving Is Hard

The text of the comic (which features Baopu, an Asian queer person with red hair, walking around in an invisible blue cage, reads as follows: Why must I mourn and grieve... Why can't it be just happiness, all the time? happiness, all the time? Meanwhile, having a Structure works better than I think It kind of keeps me afloat while I just want to do nothing. But still, It's hard. Why why, why? Oh no. Spiraling again. GRiEVING IS HARD

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Yao Xiao

Yao Xiao is a China-born illustrator based in New York City. Yao Xiao creates artwork depicting a poetic visual world where complex concepts and human emotions are examined, amplified, and given physical form. Her work has helped people all over the globe connect at unique moments, from the celebration of the 20 Year Anniversary of the SXSW Interactive Festival, to the grand release of pop singer Katy Perry's single 'Dark Horse.' She has created deeply emotional and beautiful graphics for editorial print publications, pop music record covers, concert posters and book covers. Yao Xiao's serialized comic Baopu currently runs monthly on Autostraddle. It is an original comic exploring the nuances in searching for identities, connections and friendships through the fictional life of a young, queer emigrant. Baopu stands for 'holding simplicity,' a Taoist ideal of wishing to return to a simpler state. Find her on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Etsy or her website.

Yao has written 130 articles for us.


  1. Yeah. I feel this. I’m currently in the stages of pre-grief, if that makes sense. My grandmother is dying of cancer. We don’t have a timeline or anything, but I know she won’t be around for as long as I want her to be. I hate it.

    • Anticipatory grief. I have found it to be easier than sudden grief, and still hard, like Yao Xiao says. I’m sorry and wish you healing now and when the time comes.

  2. My person died in 2021 of ovarian cancer and I still want to talk to her all the time. I see things she would like, hear stories I want to tell her, and it just feels like I have been on autopilot survival mode for two years. I am lucky that I like my jobs and my cats because they are all I have carved out time or energy for these last few years, but I hope to feel joy and connection again someday. Thank you for this!

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