Miriam Simmonds
Yalla, Geulah!

Freedom in Fire

I will lift up my eyes to the mountains.
From where will my help come?
My help will come from the Lord,
Who made heaven and earth.

Tremors. Memory loss. Fatigue. Confusion. Disorientation.

The side effects I wasn’t warned about. No matter; We’re well acquainted now. Equally so with my century old roommate and new white-walled, ever beeping, sanitiser smelling home. I am surrounded by doctors and nurses constantly, but I find my eyes constantly searching desperately to find your tiny face filling my vision, for your little laugh to reach my aching ears.

Just four million centimetres between us, and I’m feeling each one.

I need you more than I could ever have imagined; the very picture of my strength exists only in the image of your beautiful soul. Without you, I am ash and dust. Just as my heart is drying up of its last loving droplets, my eyes too seem numb of its ability to express.

How can a moon continue to shine so far away from its light source?

Hashem. Thank You for creating. For Your infinite loving kindness. I love You. Thank You Hashem for the sun, but also for the Or Haganuz. The moon and the stars. For every single moment of revealed and hidden light I embrace with tears real and raw, of pain yet love. And happiness.

What is pain but the distance between a mother and her baby? Every metre between us is another knife in my heart. I accept. With love, with compassion, with grace. With joy perhaps, knowing that at its source;

“Gam zu L,Tova.” (Tanya: Likutei Amarim 26.)

Interestingly, just a few weeks ago I was told I could be blind within 2 weeks should I stop medication. It’s Interesting that they call it blind faith. I’ve never seen things more clearly. I wasn’t surprised to later get a call to say that I wasn’t going blind, and then for that status only to keep fluctuating. The only thing that really seems stable in the chaos around me is my internal environment. For truly, only good exists. This is an objective truth. Whether it is revealed good, or hidden good that will transform into revealed good.

I see a world desperately chasing freedom, if only they knew they had it the whole time. Freedom from fear. Every day, every test, every scan, I am at peace. Whether the results are painful to hear or not, they are good. This is a truth so deeply woven into the fabric of reality yet so wildly beyond our comprehension it almost circles back to the most simplest rules of nature. Rule number 1: Gam Zu L,Tova.

Facing the Or Haganuz, the hidden light, and receiving it with happiness and love, and seeing it for what it truly is, that is freedom. That is connection to a higher being. That is empowerment beyond earthly constraints.

Baruch Dayin Haemet; Blessing Hashem for the bounty entering the world. He sees each of our souls and our needs specifically, and gives accordingly. Thank You Hashem for setting me free through every single moment of concealment in my life. Thank you for every illness, physical and emotional, truly. I accept with love. With joy. I know you’ll take me home soon to my family, I know you’ll heal me, but for now whilst im at the hospital know that I am truly happy, that I feel your love, that I am free of worry and anxiety, that I do not fear כי אתה עמדי.

Finally, I understand why Rebbe Nachman says that it is simcha that will lead to the final redemption. Because simcha is alignment, but it is also me alight in my full imperfections missing my husband and baby at home terribly, after over a month of intense hashgacha pratis stories, moments and days of complete numbness and shock, of hope and relief, of only extremity, yet I’m SOARING. This doesn’t soften the pain. This is merely pain without suffering. Without fear. Without worry. With compassion. With G-d. This is why simcha will lead to geulah, because as individuals, simcha is the pathway to individual redemption. As I lay in the MRI machine, with the helmet almost touching the tip of my nose, I could hardly believe that here too, I didnt feel even a shadow of constraint. The memory of the scan will stay with me forever. The infinite freedom and joy I felt from my Creator who was showing me His love not despite the uncomfortable situation I was in, but perhaps because of, and precisely through it. Transformed light, revealing the concealed.

I have never faced so much immediate uncertainty, yet I’ve never felt freer.

Perspective, it changes everything.

From the bottom of my heart, Baruch Hashem.

About the Author
Originally from Manchester, England, I moved to Israel in 2018 where I now live with my husband and baby. I feel passionately about all things Torah, Hashem, and spirituality. I love to express this in writing as well as drawing and simply through living. I have a deep love of nature (especially horses!), Israel, learning, and expressing through art.
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