Lessons Learned

I meet people who recognize the name of my blog sometimes. It’s a small country – we are reminded of that so often. “Ah, you are a soldier’s mother?” someone will ask and I will answer, “heavy on the ‘a’.” Yes, I am A soldier’s mother living in a land where the vast majority of women are mothers of soldiers too. I’m just one of many – nearly everyone on my block is a mother of a soldier, was a mother of a soldier, or will be the mother of one or more soldiers in the coming years.

I live in a neighborhood, a city, an area, a country, where the same is true – over and over and over again. Sometimes, inspiration for this blog comes from my children, sometimes it comes from the news. Sometimes, it doesn’t come at all, and sometimes, I find interesting posts from the past. I am on vacation – sort of – and so rather than work, I searched back to other posts I made on April 10th…and found these two.

In Guns and Things, I was just starting out – not even a month into this soldier’s mother thing. It’s an interesting post – including this:

There are advantages and disadvantages to the prevalence that guns have in our lives. But for all the arguments and debates, guns in Israel are considered a necessity and are treated with respect. They are not toys and we do not live our lives playing a game. For as long as I have known my sons would serve in the army, I have known the day would come when my sons would learn to shoot, to carry a gun, to bring it into my home.

And then on April 10th last year, after Elie was out of the army, while Shmulik was still in, I asked this question – What do you expect Israel to do? It too is an interesting post, very different from the previous one. There is anger and frustration there, and so much pain:

Over our peaceful Shabbat – when Israelis shut down for the weekend and pull into their families and communities, we were hit by over 50 mortar and rocket attacks. On Thursday, a Palestinian “fighter” – what anyone else should call a terrorist – picked up an advanced anti-tank RPG with special abilities to track and destroy. Elie knows this weapon, “it doesn’t miss what it is aimed at,” he said.

What it was aimed at – was a school bus. By the grace of God, almost all the children on the bus had just gotten off minutes before the attack. Daniel Aryeh, son of Tamar, was still on the bus and is now fighting for his life. Daniel Aryeh is only 16-years-old. He went to visit his grandmother, decided to have some fun with a family friend who is the bus driver and ride along.

Shortly after I wrote this post, Daniel lost his fight, leaving behind a family and a nation in mourning, and  a question unanswered – what do you expect Israel to do? A year later and we are still being bombarded with rockets and mortars – several last week. There are lessons to be learned…if we have the courage to learn them.

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