Wladyslaw Bartoszewski, Auschwitz prisoner No. 4427 and former Polish foreign minister: "The question we ask ourselves and of the world is how much of the truth about the horrible experiences of that totalitarian regime we managed to pass down to the younger generations. Much of it, I believe, but not enough."
With the 60th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz upon us, there have been numerous articles, television shows, blogs and other rememberances. I did not read or watch one of them. I didn't have to.
I grew up with the horror of the holocaust as a part of my existance. Both my mom and dad were Auschwitz survivors. Dad was lucky, four of his siblings (out of twelve) survived. None of my mother's family survived.
Growing up, most of their friends were also survivors. Of course I had no idea that my experience was different from other children. This was normal for me. And the rest of the children of survivors I met, well...we never talked about it. It was too uncomfortable, thinking about your parents being treated like that.
My mom, on the other hand, does watch. And each time she says the same thing. It was much worse than any depictation.
I believe her. I've heard the stories. Seen the look in her eyes. Listened to my father's nightmares.
So today i celebrate the strength and fortitude of my parents. And all of those who survived...when reason would have said they shouldn't. For they are the ones who helped shape me. And showed me that strength and a belief in survival could work miracles.