by Ronit Feinglass Plank


A year before my mother dropped us off with our father in New Jersey so she could follow her heart and go to India, she took custody of my younger sister and me. We were just back from living on a kibbutz in Be’er Sheva, and had no family to speak of out in Seattle, so she dragged us wherever she needed to, whether it was appropriate for a six-year-old and a four-year-old or not. We went to meditation groups for a famous Indian guru she was devotedly following, to places where she chanted all day, to all kinds of different people’s houses. I never wanted to go to these places but my mom got me to cooperate with promises of fun and food. And then later, when fun was getting hard to believe, it was the food that drove me; it was the one thing I could look forward to.

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