illustration by audrey ficociello
so i'm talking to my mother in the kitchen this morning over the sound of gardeners and running water from the sink and to the smells of challah, chicken and g. fish baking.
i as usual am being overly analytical about topics best left to their own conclusions...poor mother must deal with my idiosyncrasies as i do live in her home...and she knows as i know that most of the things i rip apart and put back together end up resolving themselves after a certain period of time only to leave me feeling like an over-obsessive moron.
which only serves to remind me of my many imperfections...and prompts me to say the following...
"life is not about perfection, it's about making the best of what we were created with."
mother says, "you should put that on your blog."
i think, why should i put that on my blog? it's not like i came up with the concept.
then i realize it doesn't matter whether or not i came up with the concept.
mother says; you must obey.
so i did.
but of course, now that i've broken my fri. morning routine and list of things to do (dessert, set up bed for z.r., do a deep cleaning on the backyard for bentzy's l'chaim next sunday [you're all invited...1-4 our house]) my mind must go on one of its random hikes.
what does that mean?
especially in the world and society we were blessed to be born into.
it's really pretty easy to feel like we are respectful daughters...compared to all the kids out there who yell and curse at and ignore and disrespect and disregard their parents makes us shine for just listening to a simple command like, "please wash the lettuce for shabbos".
but we are taught that with regards to ruchniyus we should not compare ourselves to those that are lower than us and gloat, but rather to those higher than us...the ones we should strive to be like.
i will share with you a story.
it is true.
the names have been changed to protect the innocent...
(fine, it's my bubby)
many years ago there lived a family in a small apartment on president street in the crown heights section of brooklyn ny.
the father was a saintly man who strived every day just to do a favor for a fellow jew; the mother a G-d fearing woman who dedicated her life to her children and husband.
and so it was that one day a young child passed away and one of the daughters came home with the sad news and shared it with her mother.
when the father found out about this he berated the young girl for telling her mother and thereby bringing unnecessary pain to this special woman.
"but she would have found out anyways..." protested the girl.
"not matter, you don't have to be the one to cause her pain.
(not direct quotes, bear with me, i wasn't there)
indeed this seemed to be a pattern.
whenever there was an occurrence of tragedy, pain, loss or suffering on any scale, be it large or small, the children learned from their father that mother was to be protected from the news as much as possible.
all for the purpose of not bringing unnecessary pain to this special woman.
time flies by like clouds passing in the sky.
the family grows and with it the joys and sorrows of life.
the children now have families of their own and carry on the tradition of sharing as much good news as possible with the matriarch while shielding her from as much pain as they can spare.
the mother is now k'ah 91 years old.
and although the man who stood by her and protected her for all those years has since passed on, the legacy that he instilled in his children has not and has continued with his grandchildren.
thank you zaidy for giving us a model to live above and beyond the demands of modern society.
good shabbos all.
(i better go call bubby to wish her a good shabbos. :) )