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To live life

חיתוך סלט

Translation by Yehoshua Siskin

There are people who are larger than life and Naomi Rotenberg, a member of our family, was one of them. Last night, at a memorial gathering on the anniversary of her death, her daughter-in-law spoke of her as follows:
"My mother-in-law lived life. Unlike her, I run through life, but she lived it. I was once with her in the kitchen when she was cutting up vegetables for a salad. She was so excited, finding joy in the cherry tomatoes and in the colors of the bell peppers. I stood there and said to myself: Wow, she's not just running through life, from one thing to the next. Even when it comes to preparing a simple salad, she is all there, paying close attention to every detail. And whether she was setting the table, making a bed, or listening to a lecture -- in each case, she lived the experience in full.
I never saw her in a hurry. Why rush? After all, we can only do what's needed to be done now, in this moment. If she spoke on the telephone with someone, she really listened. In her presence, we always felt that she was completely with us, from lighting Shabbat candles to shopping at the grocery store. The smallest mundane matters became spiritual for her, transformed by her exuberant joy. If we can learn to experience life in this way, perhaps we too will merit to live it in full."
Shavua tov. May we be privileged to live -- and not just run through -- life.


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