Join The Conversation With Mishpacha's Weekly Newsletter



Distress Signals

Sarah Porgesz

Thinking back to my first year of marriage, I vaguely remember juggling suppers, laundry, and teaching, all the while getting to know my new husband. But mostly I remember Eli Friedman.

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

A few weeks after sheva brachos, I nervously prepared for my new job as an eleventh-grade teacher in a local girls’ high school. Taking attendance that first day, I remember pausing when I came to Leah Friedman.* Something set her apart, a certain flair, a real charisma. I took hold of myself. I was not going to let myself be intimidated by an eleventh-grader.

About five weeks later, Leah approached me at the end of class. She asked if I had some time to talk to her. I arranged to meet her in the library during my free period that day.

As I sat down with her, I made small talk just to break the ice. What could she want to talk to me about, I wondered.

After a few minutes she finally asked, “Mrs. Porgesz, do you know my family?”

“Actually, I got married in the summer and just moved here. I’ve heard about your mother — she’s a party planner, right? And I think I was in camp with your sister Baila?”

Leah was quiet for a minute, then she said, “So I guess from the outside my family looks picture perfect. Right?”

 

To read the rest of this story, please buy this issue of Mishpacha or sign up for a weekly subscription.

Share this page with a friend. Fill in the information below, and we'll email your friend a link to this page on your behalf.

Your name
Your email address
You friend's name
Your friend's email address
Please type the characters you see in the image into the box provided.
CAPTCHA
Message


MM217
 
Evolution vs. Revolution
Shoshana Friedman I call it the “what happened to my magazine?” response
Up, Up, and Away
Rabbi Moshe Grylak What a fraught subject Eretz Yisrael is, to this day
Where Do You Come From?
Yonoson Rosenblum Could they be IDF officers with no Jewish knowledge?
Heaven Help Us
Eytan Kobre Writing about anti-Semitism should rouse, not soothe
Work/Life Solutions with Chedva Kleinhandler
Moe Mernick “Failures are our compass to success”
An Un-Scientific Survey
Rabbi Emanuel Feldman Are Jerusalemites unfriendly? Not necessarily
Out of Anger
Jacob L. Freedman How Angry Lawyer was finally able to calm down
5 Things You Didn’t Know about…Yitzy Bald
Riki Goldstein He composed his first melody at eight years old
When the Floodgates of Song Open, You’re Never Too Old
Riki Goldstein Chazzan Pinchas Wolf was unknown until three years ago
Who Helped Advance These Popular Entertainers?
Riki Goldstein Unsung deeds that boosted performers into the limelight
Your Task? Ask
Faigy Peritzman A tangible legacy I want to pass on to my children
Are You There?
Sarah Chana Radcliffe Emotional withdrawal makes others feel lonely, abandoned
A Peace of a Whole
Rebbetzin Debbie Greenblatt Love shalom more than you love being right
Seminary Applications
Rabbi Zecharya Greenwald, as told to Ariella Schiller It’s just as hard for seminaries to reject you