So, I’m vegan. Big surprise, eh? At first I thought that this is an emergency situation so I’ll eat whatever the grocery store has. I quickly learned that they still carried my usual food! While things like hand sanitizer are hard to come by now, food is not. Huh. I’m pretty sure that my thoughts about the lack of food are related to my grandparents.

My maternal grandparents survived the Holocaust by fleeing to Russia, but their immediate families were murdered in the Warsaw Ghetto. My mother was born while they fled, and she slept in a suitcase as a baby. I grew up hearing the tales of that war from my Baba (grandmother), who passed away several years before my first surgery. I gave the eulogy at her funeral. I remember she taught me my first song; it was “Somewhere over the Rainbow” and we watched The Wizard of Oz together. She was an exceptional opera singer, and it was her voice that saved those around her from being killed during the war. My grandfather, who was a pharmacist by profession, acted as her manager during her concerts. I consider them all very strong people. What an ordeal. They were certainly survivors.

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