The month of June holds many wonderful memories for me. When I reflect back on my childhood, I think about how it signaled the end of the school year and dreams of summer plans. By June, my mother would have already registered me for some summer camp, either day camp or sleepaway.
June also reminds me of my father and how we always used to honor him in a special way on Father's Day. My dad was an immigrant and Holocaust survivor, and he was so happy to be able to come to this country in 1947. He was never able to finish high school, but he had a lot of street smarts and innate intuition. I learned from him to "follow my gut." He arrived in New York City and got hired for his first job at a belt factory on the Lower East Side. They made those thick elastic belts that were popular at the time. Like most immigrants, he and his brother, the only two Holocaust survivors in his family, worked very long hours. In spite of that, my dad always had a positive attitude, and everyone loved being in his presence.
The month of June also reminds me of my grandmother Regina, who was born on June 22, 1903, and orphaned during World War I. My first memoir, Regina's Closet: Finding My Grandmother's Secret Journal, was about our relationship, and I'm now working on a follow-up book. If she were alive, this year she would have turned 117. I just read that the oldest living person right now lives in Japan, and her name is Kane Tanaka. She's 118 years old.
Here's wishing everyone a beautiful June! In Southern California where I live, we call the weather pattern in this month "June gloom" because it's often overcast, and it was also pretty cloudy most of this past month too ("May gray"), so who knows if June will bring in something different. But whatever the case . . . I'm sending love and light to all!
Be well. Be safe.