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What gives me strength?

מה נותן לי כוח?

* Translation by Yehoshua Siskin ([email protected])

More than 4,000 girls of all ages participated yesterday in an educational workshop on Zoom regarding the present situation. We discussed several coping mechanisms and I shared with them a perceptive question that I was asked by a psychologist at the beginning of the war: What is it that weakens us and what gives us strength?

She explained how everyone needs to have self awareness. What provides assistance and gives strength to one person can weaken and frighten someone else. Just as each cell phone has its own charger, and each car needs a certain kind of gasoline, so too each one of us needs to know what constitutes our personal source of energy — what helps us move forward and progress and what puts us in reverse.

The girls gave amazing answers. They spoke about what weakens them (scary news and videos, sirens, bad dreams, thoughts about children taken hostage) and what gives them strength One girl said that it helps her to wash the clothes of evacuees staying in a hotel next to her house; this gives her a sense of purpose and a feeling of deep satisfaction. Another girl said that she writes to her father every day in her diary; she eagerly awaits his return from reserve duty when he will read about all that she went through. And there are girls who draw their strength from reading psalms, from their mothers’ hugs, from playing music, from cooking, from playing sports, from volunteering . .

We have been speaking a lot these days about love for our fellow Jews and, ultimately, about “loving your fellow as yourself.” In other words, we must first learn how to love and care for ourselves in order to know how to truly love and care for others.

May all of us hear an abundance of good news.


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