Personal Narrative-Shabbat Day

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It was late Shabbat afternoon, that magic moment between dusk and darkness. The visitors had gone. The baby was already sleeping. Soon the lights would go on. My father and my brother would be home from Shul. There would be a call for the Havdalah candle, wine and spices, and the workweek would begin.

But for the moment it was Shabbat--Shabbat peace, Shabbat stillness. I curled up next to my mother on the living room couch, and begged, "Tell me a story. Tell me about myself when I was little."

And my mother began:

You were born in a very difficult time, a sad and bitter time for our family, for the Jewish people. Wicked Hitler was on the march across Europe. Like Haman before him, he had sworn to destroy us, to kill every Jewish man, woman
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Your father and I were determined that this one day you would have a taste of Purim joy, that you would laugh, have some fun. We planned it all carefully. That morning before your father left with the workers, I sewed a pair of gold earrings inside his jacket. He would trade these with the farmers for flour, sugar, and dried fruit. We would have hamantashen. After he had left, I found a torn lace curtain. It became your gown. From cardboard and old wrapping paper, I fashioned a crown. Your costume was ready. When the men returned from work, people gathered in our house to hear your father read the megillah. How little it takes to make a child happy! You wore your costume like a queen. I had let your hair loose and brushed it until it shone. Your eyes sparkled under your crown. Your cheeks were flushed with excitement. In your happiness, you were the center of attention. People smiled, and cried. They were remembering other Purims in better times. Every time your father read the name Esther HaMalkah ("Esther the Queen") the other children smiled at you. You stood very proud, very serious. The megillah was your story. That night, as I tucked you into bed, rosy and happy, stuffed with hamantashen, you murmured sleepily, "I'm lucky I am
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