"I was thinking that the family would be complete if you were a full-fledged Weiss”
Miri closed her eyes, but it didn’t do much to block out the reading lamp Devory had on. Even the tiniest sliver of light kept her awake. Her mother called it, “see-through” eyelids. She turned to face the wall, but the sound of turning pages grated on her nerves.
Come on already! Just go to sleep! Please!
After some time, the book dropped to the floor, as it did every night. Miri dragged herself out of bed to turn off the light.
She wanted to shake Devory’s bed on the way back to her own… maybe bang into it by “accident.” It was so unfair that Devory simply fell asleep every single night without turning off the light.
Miri walked noisily to her bed and plopped down on it, making it creak loudly. What did Devory think? That the light magically shut itself off each night?! Frustrated, Miri lay back down and closed her eyes. Breathing to calm herself, her mind began to wander.
Lunch that afternoon had been nice. Shoshi instantly fell in love with Eli, and Eli had taken to her as well. Miri had to admit, with Devory out of the way, Malky and Benny had been pleasant, even enjoyable. Miri couldn’t believe it had actually been fun.
Things unraveled at dinner.
“He” had said, “I have an announcement.”
Benny jumped up from his seat. “Are we going to Eretz Yisrael for Yom Tov?”
“This announcement has nothing to do with Yom Tov,” he said rubbing his hands together mysteriously.
Everyone stopped eating. Even Miri had been intrigued.
“Before my announcement, let me start by thanking Hashem for making us a family.”
Miri looked at her smiling mother then at the stony look on Devory’s face, then straight into the untouched asparagus on her plate.
“Our two new additions to the Weiss family are truly a brachah.” He smiled at his wife, and then at Miri’s bent head.
“I spoke to an attorney,” Mr. Weiss continued, “and the papers are ready.”
Benny wrinkled his nose. “Is an attorney like a lawyer?”
“Yes. Now it’s just a matter of Miri giving her agreement.”
Miri lifted her head. “Agreement for what?”
“Well, I was thinking that the family would be complete if you were a full-fledged Weiss.”
“I’d like to legally adopt you, Miri.”
“Adopt me?” Miri spun around to face her mother. “Ma?”
Mrs. Weiss’s smile was gone. “Of course it’s up to you, sweetie.” She looked at her husband and raised an eyebrow.
“Of course it’s up to Miri,” he said. “Give it some thought.”
“I don’t have to think about it,” Miri said. “I don’t want to be a Weiss. I don’t want to change my name or be adopted.”
(Excerpted from Mishpacha Jr., Issue 791)
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