Elie's Expositions

A bereaved father blogging for catharsis... and for distraction. Accordingly, you'll see a diverse set of topics and posts here, from the affecting to the analytical to the absurd. Something for everyone, but all, at the core, meeting a personal need.

Powered by WebAds

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

As He Was

[Aaron's Story - Introduction/Background]

In the beginning, almost, there was Aaron.

He was born less than a year-and-a-half after our wedding, so counting Debbie's pregnancy, he was a part of our life together for all but the very earliest months. The time before he was present now seems like ancient history. He was our first child, the first grandchild for both Debbie's and my parents, and even the first great-grandchild for all of our grandparents who were around for his birth. So as you can well believe, this kid was doted on!

A demanding baby, as most first-borns tend to be, he grew to be increasingly self-reliant. I don't think we needed to monitor his homework after about the 3rd grade. Whatever he owned - whether it was a material object or a responsibility - he took seriously. When a job was his, he always tried to do it to perfection.

By the time of Aaron's Bar Mitzvah - which fell on January 1st, 2000, "Y2K-day" itself (I joked at the seudah that this was the bar mitzvah of the year, the century, and even the millenium!) - we all felt sure that Aaron himself was as unique as that much-heralded date. He had the will, the ability, and the drive to be a success at whatever he attempted.

Aaron's high school years only furthered the promise of his earlier days. His excelled in every academic area, both Torah and secular studies. Socially, he was able to get along with all the various cliques - smart kids, cool kids, frum kids, athletic kids - without fully conforming to any of those groups. As testified by numerous classmates, he was always ready to share his knowledge and experience with anyone in school who needed help. His dry, gently sarcastic sense of humor (somewhat less gentle when his siblings were the target) was renowned.

All the above is true - but of course, it only gives a partial picture of Aaron as he was. It's so difficult now for me to see him in any way but through the lenses of pride and loss. But of course, like all of us, he was an imperfect human being with his unique set of strengths and challenges. Aaron was smart and hard-working; he was bossy and belittling towards his siblings. He was reliable and level-headed; he was often guarded and aloof. He was creative and witty; he was flippant and acerbic. He was a good kid; he was a full person.

He was our baby - he was our superstar. He was headed for Israel next year. And he was headed for big things in the future - that much we knew for sure.

And then, some time this past spring, Aaron began to have headaches...
to be continued

Link to Aaron's Story: Part One


At 8/3/05, 11:53 PM, Blogger torontopearl said...

Elie, each time I return to your blog, I'm just a little more jarred. Namely, because I know a six-year-old boy named Aaron Rosenfeld. Thank G-d he is alive, but last fall he almost wasn't when he had a severe allergic reaction to food he'd eaten.
Reading about your Aaron makes him very real for us. As a matter of fact, I told a friend here, an ex-New Yorker, about your blog and your Aaron, and she told me she'd heard the story from her sister in NYC after it happened. My friend knew about the graduating class canceling their senior trip at the time, knew of the New Jersey setting, etc.
Isn't it our wish that good news would travel much faster than sad news...?
May your Aaron's name and memory be for a blessing.

At 8/8/05, 12:56 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just got back from Israel and catching up on blogs. Keep writing, we're reading.

At 8/11/05, 11:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

the day i went to dunkin donuts to tough up a school day ppl came over to me saying thats the brother of the 18 yr old boy that died


Post a Comment

<< Home