Paula R. Stern is CEO and founder of WritePoint Ltd., a leading technical writing company offering documentation services and training seminars. She made aliyah in 1993 when her oldest son was 6 years old. In March 2007, her son Elie entered the Artillery Division of the Israeli army and Paula began writing about her experiences as A Soldier’s Mother. The blog continues as Elie begins Reserve Duty and her son Shmulik is now a soldier. She recently opened a publishing house, helping other authors fulfill their dream to publish.
Today it is four years since that horrible day when Palestinians infiltrated into our land, attacked and killed our soldiers, and dragged Gilad off. Sometimes, you become overwhelmed by the sadness, by the futility of fighting against the wind. Sometimes, you know there is nothing you as a single person can do to change even this small thing. Sometimes, you want to do it all...and know there is nothing that can be done at your level.
I am not a leader of a country, not even of my own home. I am not a politician who can sway crowds with a speech or rock countries with my demands. I am a mother whose heart cries today for another mother. I salute Aviva Shalit, her courage, her strength. I pray for her son every day and today, more than any other.
When words fail, perhaps all that is left are pictures. Today it is four years since that horrible day when Palestinians infiltrated into our land, attacked and killed our soldiers, and dragged Gilad off. Four years without a mother's hug, a mother's soothing voice. Four years. I have watched my son enter the army...grow, develop...and come out safe. All that I ever begged of God during that time. I have seen my second son enter the army and I am watching him grow, praying desperately for his safety.
All I can give Gilad today is my prayers for him. Be safe, be healthy, may you know the world over today people are praying for you, sending their love and hope and most of all, may you come home soon.
The only thing that has changed since this video was made...is that another year has passed. Another year, without Gilad: