Feige Epstein

The author's mother who urged him to "Run, my child"

Loyf meyn kind.” Run, my child. “Maybe you will be the one of all of us who makes it out alive.” 

Mameh had given me her blessing! Without it, I could not have attempted escape. But she freed me to make my own choice and to set my own course.

What a brave thing my mother did to bless me in this way! She knew that I could have been caught or killed in my attempt. Even if I succeeded, she and I would be separated during the uncertain days ahead. Quite possibly, even likely, she would never see me again. 

Every instinct in her body must have been to hold her only child close, to keep the two of us together come what may. But her heart finally told her to let me go. 

She broke off a piece of bread and stuffed it into my pocket. “You’ll be hungry,” she said. We hugged and kissed each other one final time, and I walked away.