February 9, 2011

Get my heart broken?

Grab a tissue, or a box.

I like to read and tend to do it a lot. When I took the kidlets to story time a little while back, I grabbed a book for myself too. It's Day After Night by Anita Diamante. She's the author of The Red Tent and I get sucked in within about 2 sentances.

The book is based on the true story of a small group of women at the Atlit internment camp in Palestine in 1945. I am well aware that it is a work of fiction, but it's still based on real girls. Girls that endured unimaginable.

There's a part of the book where one of the girls is reflecting on her survivor guilt and all who died during the Holocaust. From Wikipedia: from the Greek ὁλόκαυστος holókaustos: hólos, "whole" and kaustós, "burnt". How's that for a descriptor? My stomach dropped when I read it. The things people do to each other is insane.

The girl, in her teens or so, is reflecting and thinking about the different ways that people hid or otherwise attempted to survive. She called out the baby that was suffocated so as to not give away a family's hiding space. I had never considered that possibility. My heart broken knowing that even though this was a work of fiction, that was almost certainly a reality.

Chosing between your new child that you grew to love before they were born and the family that supported you while the child grew. Oh God. Quite literally. Oh God.

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