Dearest Kallah

Dearest Kallah Dear Kallah,

Mazal Tov! You are about to begin a brand new chapter of your life and I wish you bracha and hatzlacha in every aspect of your journey.I remember my kallah classes and early experiences in taharas hamishpacha well. The emotions, the jitters and all the work and thought that goes into it. The whole experience can be very overwhelming as well as uplifting.
Tonight I have another task to tackle. It is also one that brings a flood of emotions yet is going to take a large dose of emunah and acceptance to keep it uplifting. Tonight is my last chance to enter the purifying waters of the mikvah and come home to greet my husband and be reunited once again. Tonight is our last chance to experience that renewal, as my uterus had to be removed recently in an emergency surgery to stop me from hemorrhaging to death.

Everyone needs someone they know who will have the right words to say to them at a time like this. I called a teacher I am still close to from seminary and asked her, “If I try really hard, I can accept that Hashem does not want me to have more children and thank Him for those I am already blessed with. But – oh- just-WHY? Why would Hashem take away from me the only special mitzvah that is exclusive for us women? WHY?” My teacher tells me not to worry. She says that I get schar each month as if I went to the mikvah because I have always done so and had no intention of stopping. “It’s not the schar!” I cry, “It’s the actual mitzvah. It’s the opportunity, the experience, the renewal, the whole amazing design and intended function of what a Jewish woman is supposed to do with this organ that Hashem gave her.” I knew the answer although I needed to hear her say it so I could swallow the massive, seemingly bitter pill. I knew good and well that if this is the pill Hashem sent me now, then this was the right medicine for the rest of my personal marriage and life, as it was prescribed from above. Still, I know that I will miss this precious mitzvah and that you can not possibly appreciate something fully until it is threatened.

Many of us have heard the story of the dead flocking into Bais Medrash to learn, having been granted one additional, precious hour of life. One more chance to accomplish and acquire mitzvohs. This is what I feel like as I prepare myself for tonight’s task. Every time my husband couldn’t hand me something directly over the last few weeks, we relished the experience. This morning, we had a very deep, private conversation, being very conscious of the fact that this is the last opportunity we have to do so with physical touch being fully restricted by Halacha. Such a conversation is different than any other between husband and wife and is special in its own way. This is something you will only experience and grow to appreciate by following the Torah’s guidelines for marriage. As these restrictions are taken from me I know that Hashem conducts his world only with kindness and I accept my lot. At the same time, I feel that the loss heightens my appreciation for what I had till now. I hope that by sharing these details of my experience I have helped you appreciate this treasure as well.

May you be zoche to build a Bayis Ne’eman bi’Yisroel.

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