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Debra B. Darvick

Cutting the Cord

November 29, 2011, by

A daughter’s religious observance pains her mother. Death, birth and G-d’s apparent hand help this mother believe.

Russian Roots

August 12, 2009, by

I grew up with vastly conflicting images of Russia. It was the place my maternal grandfather fled to avoid conscription into the Czar’s army. A czar whom my paternal great-grandparents mourned because, my grandfather once told me, “they looked to him as a father.” Russia was a place of poverty and hunger. “Les gayn mein

Deathbed Visits With the Living

June 11, 2009, by

“I don’t see how you do it,” someone said when I mentioned I was a hospice volunteer. Fear hung in the air. Death. How can you be so close? Why would you want to? Many think the work depressing, but my hospice work isn’t grim. Each situation has come with its own hidden gift be

Madoff’s Tower of Babel

March 13, 2009, by

Bernie Madoff has just agreed to plead guilty. Even if he were to live out every year of a 150-year sentence he could not make restitution to the scores of people he has betrayed. The aftershocks will have no limit. Save a single life and you save an entire world. Destroy a fellow human being’s

One Sound, Many Voices

November 6, 2008, by

“Etz chayim he..l’machazikim ba….” I sing these words in Heberw each week as the Torah is returned to the ark. Without fail the English translation — its ways are ways of pleasantness and all its paths are peace — echoes in my mind, sung by Sara Ochs, the president of my youth group back in

Summer Cleaning

September 10, 2008, by

Spring cleaning and summer cleaning are completely different animals. Spring cleaning throws open windows to let in sunlight and fresh air still tinged with winter. Spring cleaning looks forward. There’s that mad scramble to get the matzot in and the last of the chametz out before Pesach. Spring cleaning is frenzied, carried upon the crest

Infinite Wisdom

July 3, 2008, by

There’s a phrase that’s popped up in recent years — “Let go and let God”. Perhaps it is this decade’s version of the oft-quoted Serenity Prayer asking for the wisdom to differentiate between the things we can change and those we cannot. Given the recent “Aha” moments in my life, these two phrases have begun

If It’s Parshat Noach This Must Be the Cohen Bar Mitzvah

October 11, 2007, by

Never thought I’d say it but I miss the bar mitzvah circuit. I miss that three-year stretch of our lives where it seemed we were living the Jewish version of the old movie, If it’s Tuesday This Must be Belgium. Yes, during those years I began to pine for my home shul instead of spending

Being a Man Jewishly

May 3, 2007, by

“Mom!” my son calls to me from his room. “C’mere! Look at my six pack!” “Huh?” I think as I climb the stairs. I’m sure he isn’t boasting about beer. What else comes in six? Batteries? Egg rolls? Fresh eggs? “See?” he crows when I enter his room. “Look at my abs! Muscles! A six

Letting Go: The Mirror Image of Breaking Away

March 30, 2007, by

The Darvick household is knee deep in breaking away. “Do you realize, Mom,” Emma said one day as we drove to school, “that soon you will have two teenagers, and then you will have two kids in high school?” Realize it? What else have I been consumed with for the past eighteen months but that

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