My mother’s yahrzeit was fast approaching. I made a kiddush in Mommy’s honor, I gave tzedakah and honored Mommy with a special women’s program, but as the actual date approached and I had to light the licht, I was emotionally depleted. What more could I possibly do for my mother?
In all honesty, in the past few weeks, I had been feeling a distancing from Mommy, which filled me with sadness, yet I knew that it was a normal rite of passage. However, the next morning, as I was traveling to an appointment, I had a “conversation” with my mother. There was still something that she could do for me! My daughter was due to give birth at any time, so I asked Mommy to look out for her and the baby-to-be to insure that all would go well.
I completed my errands and returned home and fell into a deep sleep.
Upon awakening, I noticed several messages on my phone wishing me “mazal tov” on the arrival of a little maidel. I was in shock! My daughter was not due to give birth for another week!
Shortly thereafter I received a phone call from a dear friend, Michy, who always calls me each year on the yahrzeit. I thanked him for his considerate phone call but asked him if I could call him back shortly, as I had to call family members to give them the good news.
A few minutes later when I returned his call, he had to ring off with me, because although he never sees my son-in-law, Moshe (the new father), during that time of day, he was trying to get a minyan together (it was Thursday), so that Moshe could name the baby in shul. A few minutes later, Michy texted me to be on stand-by for a telephone hook-up. I heard Moshe receiving an aliyah and I heard him name the baby, Raizel Mirel, (Rosie) my mother’s name!
Knowing that Mommy is continuing to look out for her family offers me nechamah, which I am confident, will hold me in good stead until Mashiach comes! Yet, I still have more work to do in that I know how important it is to keep our loved ones alive in word and in deed for those who knew her as well as the littlest ones who never did.
Mommy loved to dance. The last time that I visited with little Rosie I did what I usually do with “my kids.” I make up little ditties and snap my fingers to the tune. To my delight, the baby, did a little jig and tried to snap her fingers!
My kids tease me that when I come for a visit I have no interest in going sightseeing, etc. I just, in their words, “like to sit,” in order to drink in the sight of my children and my grandchildren.
One day when my daughter left to do a quick errand, she put Rosie in the swing and expectedly she started to cry because she knows that the swing means that Mommy is going “bye bye!”
I picked her up and held her close to me. I sang the lullaby that my parents always sang to me and Rosie hummed along with me. As she relaxed her body against mine, she fell asleep.
This event was the highlight of my trip.
It proves to me that the cycle of life continues and love transcends all boundaries.
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Generation to Generation
We started a family minhag when I was quite small. We gift a graduate with seforim. It all started back in the 1950’s. A gvir in town, Mr. Shulman, asked my cousin what she would like for a graduation present and she didn’t hesitate to ask for a set of machzorim. That was quite a pricey gift in those days, but it started the family trend. Upon my 8th grade graduation from yeshiva, I was gifted an identical set, which I treasure.