Wow, today was an emotional and impactful day. We started our day at Yad Vashem, Israel’s Holocaust Memorial.
It was super informative and powerful. We were all impacted in our own way and felt emotional sadness and connection. The most amazing thing was when we exited the exhibit and were able to view the city of Jerusalem.
After that, we went to Hadassah hospital, which is truly an amazing place. They shared that they treat anyone who walks in the door not as a patient but as a human being. We met a medical clown who shared that his role is to assist doctors. They create improv moments to connect with patients and create moments to reduce stress levels. A nurse whose husband received treatment and a man who received treatment spoke and really helped us understand the impact of Haddasah hospital and how they treat all patients regardless of religion or race. Such a remarkable place that makes you want to give back or to join a truly remarkable organization.
We then toured the old city of Jerusalem. Following the tour, we had a short session with Nili Couzens sharing the power of prayer. She shared one of the Torah portions which referenced a ladder and an angel. The moral of the story was that even when things go down or are tough, it is OK to keep looking up. Sometimes we can’t control what happens to us, but we can control our reactions to it.
This introduction really moved me as I was able to relate personally. We need to put everything in perspective and learn the best way to deal with things for ourselves and everybody around us. We then learned how to approach the Wall, which was whatever way we felt comfortable. It is a super emotional and amazing connection as we shared our prayers at the Wall and made it a personal moment.
Our group, South Florida group/AISH, gathered for a Bat Mitzvah ceremony. I became a Bat Mitzvah along with several of my new sisters. We had the chance to speak about our experiences, our Hebrew names, or our Torah portion. We danced at the Kotel and celebrated! I was emotional and amazed all wrapped into one.
We wrapped up the night with a group dinner and had a really good time continuing to connect with our new friends. An amazing day!
AISH South Florida