3 Years Without Mom A’H

3 Years Without Mom A’H

Today my friend Devora had a women’s gathering in her house, and she asked us to think about what we most need right now.
And I thought of my mom, whose 3rd yarhzeit is today.
My Mom was passionate about helping others. She was a devoted wife, mom and grandma. And she was also a FIGHTER.
She had to be, growing up in the tough neighborhood of Astoria, Queens. Attending medical school when the male to female ratio was 10 to 1. Becoming a psychiatrist when that was an almost unheard of speciality for women.
And on a personal level, when, at the age of 25, both of her parents and grandmother died in a tragic car accident. And again in her 30s, when, as the mother of 3 young children (including a newborn) Mom was diagnosed with MS.
For many years, thanks to medication, Mom’s MS remained stable. But over those last few years, Mom’s physical condition deteriorated rapidly, and my father stopped working in order to enable Mom to do what she loved: treating patients in her home office, especially patients other psychiatrists wouldn’t treat because they only had Medicare or couldn’t afford to pay.
I will never forget seeing my Mom, a few months before she died, sound asleep on the sofa, and then being awakened by the office doorbell announcing the arrival of a new patient. By that point, Mom was not doing well, she was generally exhausted and often in pain. But the moment that doorbell rang she popped up, and hobbled, stooped over at an almost right angle, to her office.
By that point, almost any human being would have retired. But Mom fought, never gave up, until literally her dying day.
And that was the story of her life.
And that is also what I need most today.
Waking up today, seeing the beautiful faces of the young soldiers killed in Gaza yesterday, was like getting punched in the gut.
One of those fallen soldiers, who lives in a nearby neighborhood, lost his mother to an illness a few years ago and just got engaged last month.
And then reading the Prime Minister’s statement that this is going to be a long war, and that there will be many more painful losses.
Today I felt for the first time that I CANNOT do this.
I CANNOT deal with this.
I CANNOT handle any more losses, any more suffering.
Mom, I miss you and love you and wish you were here to say to me, one last time, “Jenny, go get ’em! You can do this!”


  1. May your mother’s neshomo have an aliyah.
    I’m sure she’s very proud of you!

  2. Your wonderful mother’s shining neshama now continues – even more brightly than ever before – to help show the way.

  3. Chana Harris

    For some reason, this message of all of the messages I’ve read so far about this war, has given me the most chizuk. Maybe because I felt like you did this week- where I said I just cannot do this anymore. Or maybe even more, reading about your moms life and her incredible resilience and will to continue which reminds me that Hashem gives us what we need to do our job here on Earth. Thank you for your work- it makes all of us Jewish Moms out there feel a little less alone!

  4. Eileen Hunt


    I am thinking of you and your family during this terrible time. I was deeply saddened to hear of the loss of your mother, who was a heroine of mine.

    Love, your friend, Eileen

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