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Jewish Journal

Saying Goodbye

by Ilana Angel

August 16, 2012 | 5:51 pm

I left the home of my mother and sister yesterday and my heart is broken.  Saying goodbye to my mother is crushing and I can hardly breathe.  It is painful to live so far from her.  When my mother left Israel with her young family, my grandmother saw them off and my mother vividly remembers waving bye to her mom from the car.  She told her mom she would see her soon but she never did.  Her mother passed away before she made it back to Israel.  I think of that each time I leave my mother.

Living in another country feels like a world away.  We are in different time zones and that alone makes me feel farther away.  I wish I could get in my car and drive over for coffee whenever I wanted to see or hug her.  My older sister Roni is an amazing person.  She took care of my Dad when he was sick because the rest of us lived in other cities, and she lives with my mother now.  She is kind and never complains, even though her life carries the weight of many things.  She is a wonderful mother, sister and daughter.

My mother, sister and I sobbed when I left their home.  We were in full blown ugly cry.  My mother was shaking and my sister was telling me to stay longer.  It took over an hour to pull myself away and get in the car.  As I drove off I looked back and saw my sister sitting on the stoop and I had to pull over and run back to hug her again.  We then hugged and cried for another 20 minutes.  I made her go inside so I could pull away without sobbing.

I am heading back to Toronto and will be leaving for LA on Friday.  My visit was short and I look forward to coming back and bringing my Englishman to meet my family.  I feel like I have cried everyday, which makes sense since I have.  It is a joy to be here with my son and as sad as I am to leave my mom, tomorrow I will spend time with my brother.  He is my hero so I am excited.  My departure is coming fast so I’m going to buy tissue and keep the faith.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Ilana Angel writes two blogs for JewishJournal.com. KEEPING THE FAITH is about her worldview as a single Jewish mother, and KEEPING IT REAL is all about reality television....

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