I haven’t written a blog piece for a while. I have meant to, especially since we have seen a lot of activity regarding Women of the Wall in the last couple of months.
But I want to write about my friend Cindy, a remarkable woman who died tragically on Wednesday by suicide. Her funeral will be Sunday.
Many years ago, Cindy and I co-chaired the Women’s Rights Hevra at Congregation B’nai Jeshurun in Manhattan. Our focus at that time was to keep abortion legal, and our committee did advocacy work, wrote pro-choice articles, went to pro-choice rallies, petitioned NY State legislators to fund sex education in New York, organized phone banking and bus trips to Pennsylvania for John Kerry in 1994, and then tried to keep each other’s spirits up when George Bush was elected.
Cindy was a real sweetheart, incredibly genuine, kind and loving. Despite her proclamation of being “evil” in her suicide note, I don’t think she had an evil, malicious, or ungenerous bone in her body. What we know she did have was a troubled soul, and her death teaches us all to be more vigilant in recognizing the real human toll of depression and despair, as well as the potential severity of post-partum depression, in particular.
If you are interested in learning more about this loving and generous woman and her terrible suffering, go to the article that appeared in today’s NY Times,
May Cindy rest in peace, and may her son Keston grow up to know her legacy in all its fullness and complexity. Zichrona livracha (z”l) — may her memory be for a blessing.