Sunday, August 27, 2006
The Way It Is:

Today I went to visit my stepfather's mother. My mom and brother scheduled a visit. I haven't seen her in 10 years. It's Elul, a month of forgiveness - a month of growth and healing. I figured it's the right time to go. She's living with a nurse, more dead than alive. She barely opened her eyes. I looked at her and imagined doing a tahara on her. I know that sounds terrible, but that's where it's at.

My stepfather's sister was there. I found her to be vulgar, which both amused and repulsed me at the same time. The things coming out of her mouth shocked me, I felt assaulted. Then I thought, "Why am I judging her? It's Elul, not the time for negativity." In fact, one of my Elul resolutions is to strive to look upon people with a "good eye." The truth is, she's probably in a lot of pain.

We hung around as Grandma dozed. Then we left. I watched her daughter stroke her hair tenderly and whisper to her - thus redeeming herself in my eyes. I blessed Grandma that she should live until moshiach comes. I gave my step-aunt a Neshek brochure. I told her that Grandma was the first woman I ever saw light shabbos candles.

For that alone I will always be grateful.


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My Photo Name: Fancy Schmancy Anxiety Maven
Location: Chutz l'aretz - Outside of Brooklyn

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