It’s rough out there. It really is.

The darkness is thick.
I think the title of David Horovitz’s op-ed column today sums it up:
“Hamas hostage releases are a daily mix of horror and relief. And this is the easy part.”

It’s so easy to fall into the grips of despair.
It happened to me today.
The grief of the last 54 days hit a fever pitch, the horrors of the realities of this war -on our land and off it- pulled me down like quicksand.
It happens. It’s inevitable.

Most folks I know have never lived through anything like this.
Shahar’s grandmother did.
She survived the horrors of Auschwitz and all that led up to it living as a Jew in Czechoslovakia (born in 1917 when it was still Hungry).
She passed away 2020. She was a 103.
I’ve been wanting to talk to her.
I’m fairly confident that I know a lot of what she might say if she were alive today- she spent her life sharing her story publicly.
That’s her and our oldest, Batya, pictured above.
I miss her.
She spent her life in the shadow of that horror – that genocide.
Although we spoke freely with each other, there are a lot of questions I never thought to ask her.
Things that only occurred to me now.

Anyway, I spent most of the day under the weight of the whole darn world.

Then I spoke with a dear friend.
We checked in.
Leveled the emotional playing field.
We listened to each other.
Heard each other.
She reminded me that the logic we are so accustomed to using is not applicable to this situation.
It doesn’t hold ground.
The math doesn’t add up.
Our hostages, our soldiers, our citizens, our government, the US government, our enemies (there, there, there, there, and there), the prisoner release, the ceasefire, the grief, the stories… on and on.
It’s too much.
It’s impossible.

She reminded me.
We are an impossible people.
We always have been.
From Pharaoh to Hitler to Hamas (thank you Douglas Murry)
We carry the blessing of light.
We’re the good guys.
We know who we are.
We know the stories of our people.
We were raised on them.
Passover. Purim. Chanukah. Israel Independence Day.

“When Moses held up his hand, Israel prevailed; when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed. And the hands of Moses became heavy…Aaron and Hur supported his hands, one from this [side], and one from that [side]; so he was with his hands in faith until sunset.” Exodus 17:11-12.

That’s what we do for each other.
This is who we are.
We check in.
We listen.
We let us ourselves be.
We move through.
We hold each others arms when they’re heavy.
We allow ourselves to be reminded of a bigger picture.

This is a war of good versus evil.
The good guys are going to win.
It may not be clear yet, but it will be.

The good guys will prevail.
Am Yisrael Chai.