Sunday, March 29, 2009

Something To Kvell About -- Part 2

In January, I wrote about my youngest son giving his first d'var Torah for our shul's congregation after davening. It was rather impressive then, and he gained the impetus to speak again.
Noam decided he wanted to choose his future bar mitzvah parsha, Parsat Vayikra, which was read yesterday in shuls worldwide.
Very diligently, he worked on his words of wisdom, pulling out THE LITTLE MIDRASH SAYS to guide him. Late in the week he came and read to me what he'd written. Wow, he had sat and found important things to say without my husband or I giving him guidance.
I'd invited my mother to come and be with us for Shabbos so that she could witness her youngest grandson up on the bimah, giving his "drash".
The rabbi introduced him as "nine-year-old Noam Saban, currently a student in grade 3, who, in 4 years will be celebrating his bar mitzvah with us, and will now give us a taste of his parsha Vayikra."
This boy managed to impress us all; I didn't feel right accepting "yasher koach's" for the fruits of his labor, as I truly had nothing to do with it.
To top off the afternoon, at the lunch table, my mother pulled out a gift she'd brought for Noam. It wasn't a newly bought gift, but rather one of my father's small siddurim. (prayer books) I took it from her and she told me to open it up; on the flyleaf, in my father's handwriting it said "Noam Itamar". It was as if this book would have been meant for him! And how a propos with his giving this d'var Torah that day, a reflection of what he will G-d willing speak about in four years, it was like a bar mitzvah gift meant for this little boy.
I was in awe, as we all were around the table. Even Noam stared at the book, picked it up gently, kissed it and leafed through the pages, announcing the tefillot he was finding.
My mother said this wasn't the siddur that my dad used on a regular basis, but one she thinks he traveled with, when they did travel (which was very infrequent the past 8 or 9 years). None of the other siddurim or Tehillim that my father used have any of the other five grandchildren's names written in it. This is the only one, and she thinks that perhaps when Noam was born, his Zaidy wrote his name in the book...perhaps for him to have one day.
It was very moving for us to witness Noam receiving this precious gift, for us to witness that he recognized the true value and meaning behind this special gift (highly noticeable in his look of awe as he stroked the book and kissed it) and for how fitting yesterday's Shabbos was for him to receive it.


Janine said...

Pearl, I was so touched to read about Noam's drash that he prepared himself, and the very special gift that he received from your mother on that Shabbos.
I am sure that Naom will always treasure his grandfather's precious siddur, and everytime that he opens it, he will think of his grandfather with love.

Robin said...

Wow. I am blown away. Clearly I have been raising little Jewish retards. My son would have looked to see if their were any Pokemon in the siddur.

And right now? I'd be accepting yasher koaches up the ying yang. So you go get those koaches, Girl! You earned 'em!

rabbi neil fleischmann said...

Pearl, this whole thing is a wow; the nachas your son brougt you at this particular time, the finding of the name in the siddur - also at this particular time, the outstanding (bli ayin hara) love of Torah and lack of fear of public speaking and ability and desire to prepare on his own at such a young age, and and and.

PS - Did he say (The Midrash Says says - I always thought it would be funny if someone cited it that that way.)

PSS - The word is that The Midrash Says (and I guess the little one too) was written by the wife of the rabbi whose name appears on it.

I thought this had been posed, butjust found it floating in my computer...