Hope you’re having a great day.
… My wife and I just spent a week inOttawavisiting our nephew Yehudah.
It was the first time we’ve seen him since the accident.
And while it was far from our typical “vacation”?
It was not only a change of pace.
And not only a chance to visit Yehudah and his family.
We came away inspired.
… As you may remember, Yehudah suffered spinal injury from the accident.
He is still in intensive care but, thank G-d, is making slow progress daily.
With great effort, and despite a tracheotomy to help his breathing?
He can talk softly.
You can understand him if you get close and also watch his lips.
And while I don’t know exactly how it works?
They attach something for a few hours a day which helps him speak.
(It reduces the amount of oxygen coming from the ventilator.
And that makes him work harder at breathing.
But it also lets more oxygen into his larynx.)
If he works really hard at breathing and at the same time tries to talk?
It’s much louder and clearer.
And what was the first thing Yehudah said when they put it on?
When he could finally “talk”?
“I wanted to thank all of you for helping me overcome this challenge.”
… Talk about being humbled? About being inspired?
We all have “thank – you’s” that have not been said.
Sometimes we just forget. Sometimes there’s “too much going on.”
And sometimes we find it hard to say thank you.
But if we think of Yehudah?
About how much he has “going on”. How easily he could just focus on himself?
And about how hard he has to work just to say thank you?
We’ll be much better at saying thank you.
And much better people!
… Yehudah is very determined.
Of course, he wants to recover. And he wants to return to his family.
But he doesn’t stop talking about something else…
“I need to get back to teaching Torah to Jewish kids!”
We all look forward to Yehudah returning to the class room.
But in the meantime?
He has taught his uncle Moshe quite a bit.
And he has given us all a tremendous lesson!
Let’s be “good students”.
Think of a thank you that you have not said.
And say it!
All the best,
Rabbi Moshe Katz
2832W. Touhy Avenue
P 773. 761. 0400 ext. 201
F 773. 761. 9262