Latest update: July 7th, 2013
The tear is rolling down my cheek. It lands atop my lips. I lick my lips to remove the dryness and the saltiness soaks into my tongue. I take a long deep breath and begin to think. Why? How could she do that to me? We’re best friends. We’ve known each other practically since we were born. How could she go and do such a horrible thing?
You’re probably wondering what it is that she did to get me so mad. Well, it was absolutely horrible! She embarrassed me in front of my whole class! She just had to let the cat out of the bag. I know you’re probably wondering what the secret could’ve been. It doesn’t really matter what it is and I think enough people know already. We all have secrets and if our best friends know them, we get angry if they go and tell others those secrets – so you probably know what I’m going through. I trusted her with that secret and she just had to let it slip out. I don’t know if I could ever trust her again. We were the best of friends. We’ve always eaten lunch together, played games together, done just about everything together. She wanted to let that all go? Well, that’s her loss.
The rapping on the door interrupts my thoughts and I quickly go to open it.
“Hi Bracha, I am so sorry about what happened in school today. I didn’t mean to embarrass you by telling the class your secret, it’s just, I had nothing else to say,” says Miriam with eyes swelled up with tears.
“You had nothing else to say? What do you mean by that? Oh you mean you ran out of all of your juicy lashon harah stories so you decided to talk about me, is that it?” I reply with a harsh, unforgiving tone.
“No, that’s not it at all. I never wanted to speak lashon harah or embarrass you. You just don‘t understand.”
“We have always been the best of friends. We share so many memories and good times together. Help me to understand. Please, help me understand why you would do this to me, why you would do this to us.”
“I, I don’t know how to say this but I, I’m very sick. The doctor says that it doesn’t look well. I have a very scary disease and I’m, I’m just so afraid and nervous. I’m sorry I didn’t tell you sooner, I just didn’t know how. Please forgive me. I mistakenly said your secret because I couldn’t think of anything to answer when everyone started questioning me.”
Once again my uncontrollable tears fall from my eyes and I grab her in my arms. We stand there crying together and words are unable to escape my lips but I must comfort her. I must help her get through this.
“Miriam, you’re the nicest person I know. You will get through this. Hashem controls the world and He has a reason for everything that happens. Hashem loves you and wants what is best for you and all of us. We are all here for you.” I give her one last tight squeeze and then she, with all of her simchas hachaim, as if nothing is wrong, walks home smiling and waving until I can no longer see her.
“Good morning! Did you study for the science test? I’m so nervous because there’s so much information that we have to know. Do you want to get together after school to study for the Chumash test that’s tomorrow? Also, I thought that it would be nice if we could get together to go to the nursing home. You know how much Mrs. Green loves it when we come to visit her. She hasn’t been able to do much since she broke her arm and so it would be enjoyable to her to have someone to talk to,” says Miriam as I arrive at the corner that we meet at to walk together to school. This is how Miriam greets me each morning. She always has a big smile on her face and a kind word to say. She is always thinking of other people and she is always so giving. Though she is sick and she has her own life to worry about, she’s more concerned about how others feel. I don’t know where she finds the power to remain so strong. As the weeks go by, not that she really needs my help but I’m trying to be a loving friend through all of this, I try to distract her from this disease. I invite her to go for walks with me, bake, go shopping, and just have some fun. I want her to be happy and remove herself from her pains for a little bit. She shouldn’t have to be anxious and worried all the time. Beneath that mask of happiness and serenity, I know she’s thinking about her treatments and all of the dangers that she is in.
The ringing of the phone awakens me on Sunday morning. “Hi Bracha, I’m sorry to inform you that Miriam is not doing well. She was just rushed to the hospital and is in critical condition. Please daven for her, thank you,” says her choked up mother on the other end.
I can hear the thumping of my heart, the beating slowly quickening its pace. I can feel the drop of sweat trickling down my face as the news slowly sinks in. I grab my Tehillim and cry with all my might to the Ribbono Shel Olam. Please Hashem, please have rachmanus on her. She’s just a young girl with a pure neshama.
My mother drives me to the hospital. I step in through those electric doors, still clutching my tehillim. I walk up to the main desk and shakily ask for Miriam’s room number. I feel like I’m in a nightmare that just won’t end. I can’t just wake up from it and forget about it. I can’t just hide under my covers until it seems like it is safe to come out. I must deal with this now. After all Miriam has done for me, I must do whatever I can to help her. I must daven to Hashem because during these times, times of crisis, sadness, and pain Hashem is with us and He wants to hear from us. I think back to when we were little girls, playing together with our dolls. I remember when we lost our first tooth together. The Shabbosos we spent together chatting about our week and telling jokes. Please Hashem, please don’t take that away from us. She brings smiles and joy to everyone around her. Please don’t take away such a good natured person from any of us. She does not deserve this sickness or having to lose everything at such a young age. Please Hashem, please save her and despite what the doctors say, cure her. Hashem, You could do anything, things that are incomprehensible. Please Hashem, have rachmanus on this sweet neshama.
Her mother steps out of the room with a wet face and red eyes, but a big smile spread across her face. She opens her arms and puts them around me.
“Everything is ok. Miriam is going to be fine. Thank you so much for helping her through this. I appreciate all that you have done for my daughter,” whispers her mother in my ear.
I enter the room and a red faced girl with tears and a smile greets me. I sit down on the bed next to her. We look into each other’s eyes and smile. I quickly grab her in my arms and give her a tight squeeze. Suddenly the tears begin to flow down my cheeks but they are not tears of sadness or worry. They are tears of happiness, relief, and thanks. Thanks to the Ribbono Shel Olam, Master of the Universe for hearing my cries. He has saved her and saved our friendship. He has saved a person who is not only a friend to me but a friend to everyone. We just sit there and hug, and allow those tears to roll down our cheeks.Malka B. Kirsh
About the Author: Malka B. Kirsh is in 10th grade at Bais Yaakov of Ramapo
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