Shalom Western Wall Family,

I originally created this blog as a way to spread light from the holy land, and especially from the holiest place in the holy land to surrounding areas.
Then my husband’s tragedy occurred and that became the platform for the blog. But now, as day 5 of the war is in progress, I keep thinking I need to say something. After all, the blog is to apprise everyone of the situation. But as day after day happens, I keep wondering, ‘what am I going to say?’. I want to spread emuna and uplifting thoughts. But truly, the reality of our home is very different and very sobering. So I decided to spread reality – which is really emuna anyway.

3 days ago we heard our first sirens in Jerusalem – very unexpectedly. A rocket was coming. 3 kids were up and 2 were sleeping. In a flash, I had to make a judgment call whether I felt the threat was bad enough to wake up the 2 sleeping kids and whether to make the dash to find the bomb shelter keys and then to the bomb shelter. The only thing worse than having to take care of your kids and taking responsibility for them in this situation, is doing it without a husband to make you feel safe and confident and to take care of you when it is all over.

In the end we decided to huddle under the stairs, say tehillim and hug. That continued for more than an hour later until everyone packed blankets and mattresses around my bed and slept together. They were scared – terrified really.

Let me explain. 2 years ago we had 2 days of sirens during the last war. I told stories to my kids and we sang songs in the bomb shelters and made everything pink and pretty. Was pretty much a breeze as far as rocket scares go.
This year there is no more picture-painting of bubble-gum parties and picnic nights and everything’s going to be alright. Reality use to be never a care in the world or fear in the mind – Hashem would always protect and save – no problem. This year, the kids know better and the picture I paint has to be more real and mature – don’t worry kids, exactly what is supposed to happen will happen – and that’s always for the best. Does that mean no one is ever going to get hurt or die? Now they know that is not true – but it is also ok. My emuna lessons to them are different now. More reality-based.

As they asked question after question, we talked about whether we are doing the right thing. Are we doing our hishtadlus? Well, we are saying tehillim and it is probably turning those rockets away from packed areas. We are going to a safe place. That’s all we can ask for. If it is not our mazel to go now, then no rocket in the world can touch us, as long as we are not putting ourselves in danger’s way. And if it is our mazel to go, then there is nowhere we can run. When it’s time, it’s time. What is right will happen.

Now of course, they are kids – so I reminded them that they have 2 Abas now in Shemayim watching over them.

Someone said to me today ‘I wonder what Hashem is trying to tell us’. I found it kind of funny, because I feel like Hashem is very repetitive in many ways ‘just to do teshuva -that’s always what He’s saying’, I retorted. My kids and I decided to tell Hashem that our hishtadlus now will be to try to be better in our ‘Ve’ahavta Le’Orecha Kamocha’.

The army responds with fighting, the politicians respond with decisions and discussions. If we are neither, then we obviously respond with something else. I find it pointless to discuss how we think the war or the country should be run. Is anyone actually listening to us when we say this? If I am not Netanyahu, so who cares what I think? Why waste energy speaking about what I think will solve the situation militarily or politically. If I want to do something, then I reserve myself to an area where I actually have control. Hashem listens to my teshuva, to my tefila (prayers) and to my improved actions. He also listens to yours and responds in kind. Where we have control and influence – we should act. Where we don’t – we are not actually doing anything.

Almost 600 rockets have been launched – unprecedented not to have a casualty in such a situation. Thank you Hashem!
Even one of the Hamas leaders, after being asked how it could be that he hasn’t been able to kill an Israeli yet, said ‘What can I do if Allah makes miracles for them? But the minute Allah gets angry with them, wait and see what will happen!”. Thanks for the reminder Hamas – we will make sure to continue to make Hashem proud while you pound us.

Please take a moment and pick one extra thing to do to merit Hashem’s protection – after all, this ridiculous war is just for our spiritual growth anyway! Not just for us under fire, but for everyone at home as well!

Just a note – remember the 2nd antifada? Dozens of bus bombings never-ending. Letter-writing campaigns, protests, angry Presidents – nothing worked to stop it. Then the #2 bus from the Kotel blew up. We all heard it. The Rabbis got together and realized that there must be something spiritually dangerous about buses that causes them to be so vulnerable to attacks. They decided to make kosher buses – segregating men and women. Guess what happened? No more bus bombings.
I feel the antifada mentality back amongst the Arabs on the street. The unrest is brewing. That makes me more concerned than any rockets. Thoughts?

With love from Jerusalem,


7 responses to “A word from above the bomb shelter”

  1. Robin Katz says:

    I agree that we need to do our hishtadlus and being better in ‘Ve’ahavta Le’Orecha Kamocha’ is a wonderful idea, but I don’t think that we can deny that the Iron Dome, the shelters, and the IDF attacks are also our collective hishtadlus which, in part, protects Am Yisrael. There are specific instances of a kindergarten and homes which were hit with missiles and all of the inhabitants who were in the shelter at the time escaped injury. But for the Iron Dome and the soldiers who are operating it, there would be much more damage. And the conduct of the Israeli soldiers throughout this war, reflecting the respect for human life, is quite a kiddush Hashem. Perhaps ‘Ve’ahavta Le’Orecha Kamocha could be kept in mind on Yom haZikaron. Would it really be wrong to say Tehillim for the soldiers who fell defending Am Yisrael or visit a military cemetery to comfort their families?

    • Batya says:

      We absolutely must run to a shelter or do whatever protocol the army says is the safest – so do all the Rabbis. You are right that the Iron Dome is amazing! Shelters are absolutely incredible. And the IDF is doing wonderfully. I believe we should say tehillim daily for the IDF, the protection and success of the army and the protection of our people. That’s just being human and decent human beings and Jews.
      We should all do our part in whatever role we have been given and help others succeed in their roles. This is not political, it is just human.

  2. petlover1948 says:

    May you and yours, and all in Israel, and the world be blessed with peace and joy

  3. shiri says:

    i know u dont wanna hear that u are amazing but you ARE xxx

  4. Ana_McCarthy says:

    BDHE – Im sorry that we converged at this axis half a world away. Thinking of you. You brought me to observance…, 10Q

  5. Julie says:

    Hope the bombings will be over soon — without anyone getting killed. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

  6. John Dziak says:

    I hope that you and your family will be safe. Best wishes and a hug!

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