When my mom was very sick, I had a feeling in my gut that the end was close. I had hoped that I was wrong, but was afraid I was not. It was as I was preparing myself for the inevitable. Instead of facing the pain all at once, I was braced.
I was traveling alone in Paris when I climbed the steps of Sacre-Coeur. I had not seen the trolley and was up for the challenge while six months pregnant. I sat in the church staring at large Jesus pinned to the cross as tourists came and left. I prayed for my mom sick in her hospital bed in India. Do I betray myself and pray to Jesus? Promise my allegiance should my mom recover? My Judaism is part of my identity but I considered denouncing it exchange for my mother.
The favorite teacher of friend of mine who attended Catholic high school was a former POW. He prayed to G-d that if he survived the prison he would devote the rest of his life to Him. Sitting in one of the holiest churches in Paris where my mom had once studied I prayed to whomever was listening but remained allegiant.
It was all awful. And I am so afraid that I will be returning down a similarly awful path.