Shalom friends and extended Western Wall Prayers Family,

It has been over 8 months since Gershon zt”l passed away. From before Pesach until now feels like 5 months in and of itself. Passover is truly the chag of transformation. I feel like our family and especially me personally, have traveled many oceans and lands since then and have arrived on a temporary island called ‘here’. It is quiet. Serene. Uncomplicated. Focused. Different plants grow here and the waters are a strange but pleasant color. We are getting used to the closeness yet alien feeling of being ‘here’.

As I look back I remember some of the things that got me ‘here’. Before this all happened, I had the need to go in search of myself this summer. I realized that I needed to come closer to who I really was. In order to do that I needed to start writing and talking. I had no idea about what; I just realized that my higher purpose was to inspire people. I started a blog, I had plans to start an online radio advice line and I started putting the word out that I was available for speaking engagements. I had no idea what I was going to talk about I just knew that I felt alive when I helped others to reach higher places.

And then ‘IT’ happened. The IT that pummeled my world as I knew it. The IT that couldn’t have thrown me farther off guard.

And I started speaking. I spoke at the shiva for hours and hours on end. There was barely anyone else sitting, so I had the stage ironically. And I kept speaking. I spoke until 3 am the last day of shiva and asked for more time. Then I started writing. The blog was right here in front of me waiting. The stage had been set, the mike already prepped, the audience just waiting for a word.

The bitter irony. I found out what I was going to be speaking about.

Someone special told me that I was Gershon’s midwife to Olam HaBa. I was there for his neshama to be born into the world of souls. Likewise, he too helped me to be born into my new world ahead – whatever that may be.
So far it is a world where I have fallen deeper in love with my kids, where I have expanded far beyond my comfort and imagined-possible zones to take up the emptied space, and where I have learned that the act of giving especially applies to oneself.

With love from Jerusalem,

6 responses to “Where are we now?”

  1. rachelli says:

    wishing you only hatzlocha and nachas from your precious children.

  2. Rochel Fine says:

    We are friends with Jon And Davida Schutz here in Cleveland and he’s the one who introduced us to you and your story. Although we’ve never met personally, we feel connected. We are doing acts of chesed in Gershon’s name and you are in our thoughts and prayers. This is the first time seeing your blog. You are an incredible writer , so inspiring and honest. Thank you for bringing us into your life! Hashem has a plan and although it’s not always the plan we are ready for or what we want, He has His reasons. You have inspired so many people from all over the world! You should continue speaking and writing and giving chizuk to others!!!!!

  3. Julie says:

    Checking your blog regularly and was so glad to read this update! Thank you for sharing your journey with us!

  4. David Scop says:

    Rebbitzen Burd,
    You are the example I use when someone downtrodden says there are no more people to look up to in our generation. I point to the east and say: In the Old City of Yerushalayim I know someone who lost, and she keeps on going. It is possible to inspire. To be inspired. To appreciate what still is, not just what was. Steve Eisenberg, another positive person taught and continues to teach: You just need to change your glasses to see them: G-d colored glasses.

    We miss you and hope to see you soon,

    David S

  5. Keren Miller says:

    Dear Batya,

    You are an incredible person with tremendous strength and perseverance. I am in awe of you. I have wanted to write to you ever since your tragic or I should say “our tragic loss”. I have been a follower of your blog and have been inspired, moved, and strengthened from your words of chizuk. It is evident why certain people are given specific nisyonot(challenges), as those are the heroes who go on to grow and inspire others to grow from those challenges. You really inspire us. I understand that your journey is a difficult one, but you are taking it with such stride and bitachon. Thank you for being a shlicha as a source of encouragement and strength. May H’ give you the koach to continue all that you do, with your children and with Klal Yisrael. Thank you for inspiring us to move on and to never give up, but rather to believe in yourself and to trust in H’ to guide and pave the way. May He continue to pave it for you and may you always see His helping hand in all you do.
    Btw- you write beautifully.
    Thank you so much,
    Bracha V’hatzlacha,

  6. Karyn Bogart says:

    I am truly sorry you lost the one you love …Here in NY , I feel this story as I know that the
    Western Wall Prayers which Gershon created, has given me hope when there seemingly
    is or was none …May you too be comforted by your prayer agents…Giving Hope is a not typical …
    it seems to me to be a Missvah of lofty heights …& I will always support you. KolTuv.

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