Chava Berman Borowsky

Life Goes On

After refreshing my news feed every five minutes and being voluntarily locked into my house for three days I decided that it was doing me no good at all to be cooped up without any routine or structure and therefore I decided to go back to work.

My faith in humanity was restored. The most comforting call I had all week was when the first customer of the day started fighting intensely about a ten NIS service charge. It was precisely then that I immediately believed wholeheartedly that the terrorists haven’t broken our spirits. It’s still possible for people to be preoccupied with ten NIS service charges.

I spoke to my manager and I asked him whether he got a Tzav 8. He shrugged his shoulders and casually replied that the army isn’t for him and so he ditched his Tzav 8. I replied that as soon as the sirens started I demanded from my kids that they receive good grades in Science and Math because I don’t want them in active combat and would much prefer for them to be in Shmoneh Matayim. It was so comforting to hear that we don’t all have to be heroes all the time.

I spoke with an Arab customer from Abu Gosh. He explained to me that he was too afraid to go into Jerusalem to his bank for fear of being attacked by Jews because he’s an Arab. I replied that there’s no reason for him to be afraid but that of course he should only do what he feels comfortable with.

The sirens throughout the day gave us extra breaks from work. We used the extra time we had to bond over amusing family stories and the subject of Hamas terrorists didn’t even come up once. Going into the miklat every so often just blended into the background of a new everyday routine. 

And this is precisely what we’re fighting for. For the normalcy that allows us to have really stupid arguments over parking spots and our space in line. For the normalcy to scream to our kids that they’re up way too late and tomorrow is a school day and that if they stay up late one more day we’re taking away their PlayStation for a week. For the normalcy of getting into stupid housework arguments with our spouse. For the normalcy of petty kids’ fights and even more petty adult fights. For the normalcy of actually caring about a ten NIS service charge.

About the Author
Chava Berman Borowsky grew up in Los Angeles, CA in an Orthodox community in the La Brea Fairfax neighborhood. She moved to Israel in 2008 and has since lived in Jerusalem, Bet Shemesh, Holon, and Ashdod. Her hobbies include cooking, hiking, painting, and writing.