By Joan Praver—Beit T’Shuvah Board Member
My parents are long gone and I have considered myself an independent ‘orphan’ since 1985. The main guide to how I have existed comes from my husband. Most of the time we agree or disagree, but there have been enough mutual decisions to assure we remain loving and caring for each other’s welfare to be able to celebrate our 65th year anniversary.
My parents, however, set my pattern for an honorable standard of life. I was an only child conceived on their honeymoon. Because their timing was the great depression of the twenties, they were remiss to procreate further. Their first priorities were devoted to keeping an honorable job that provided a roof over our heads and food on the table. They believed in responsibility and integrity and became the example that guided my entire future. They also managed to contribute whatever they could spare to worthwhile causes. We always had a ‘pushky’ on a shelf, to collect our change.
I’ve learned to apply their lessons well, by becoming a professional volunteer. From helping others I have gained a purpose for having been born. If I can improve the life of someone, it also feeds my soul and gives me more gratification then earning a salary I could spend frivolously on myself. I am truly a very content wife, mother, grandmother, and great grandmother. I assist people seeking more fulfilling lives. I’m a very happy woman!