Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Sylvia Feld - July 28, 1982

Living with the Holocaust Experience

Do you suffer any physical illness as a result of your experience during the Holocaust?

SF: I know then I'm a person what get quick excited. But on the other hand, I'm a person, a good one. That I can give my life to people and anybody would ask for something--I'm ready I never refuse anything, I'm willing always to help. But you know for no reason many times I get very depressed, I'm very down and I, I'm the last one what I can help myself to go on a living. On the small things you know I make a big issue then it hurts my health and, and, and I, and I'm sick which this is the depression from concentration camp what I assume because many times I ask the doctors and they told me then that's my nerves.

Does the past ever interfere with your life today? [pause] Are there any particular kinds of situations that occur that images oh, or do you remember images that involve in your dai... that are involved in your daily tasks or celebrations?

SF: I keep wi... I keep wishing all the time then that I wish I would have my parents. Then this would be a symbol for me to show my family what kind of parents I had. And maybe it would be easier for me to follow the footsteps. And uh, uh, comes the holiday, I can never bury my holidays. I always try my hardest and my best to make the beautiful holiday like at home. But it's never the same, it's never like our home like my father was the head of the table--it was different. Thanks God, I'm appreciate--I have a husband, we try to, to make uh, keep the family together but Europe in Orthodox life was a different life.

Is there anything that ever occurs to you in a day here that makes you remember the past?

SF: I never forget the past and I never can think of it to forget in a minute the past. And I, uh, uh, happen in the future even then uh, I get older then maybe I'm gonna follow things more like I saw in my parent's home.

Do you have nightmares?

NF: [whispering]

SF: Yes I do have my nightmares. The most is, is my father. And I question all the time why a few times I saw him and always in black, you know like he would wear a robe--everything in black. And, and, and I still see him in my sleep and, and, and uh, with his red beard. And many times I, I feel then like I'm blessed when I look at my daughter that I keep thinking then it's like a picture of my father because the love was unbearable. I loved my mother dearly too but I felt I was an exceptional good child when I was young and my father used to compliment me, all the things, and this is what I keep thinking in my dream. And many times I get up like I feel I, I am with him.

Do you have any pictures of your uh, that survived the...

SF: I wish I would, I wish I would. I would give away the world for it. I never had anything.

[pause] Is there anything else that you'd like to say--anything I might have forgotten to ask you?

SF: I'm very proud of my children. I'm very proud of my family. I just hope they never do or repeat anymore what happened. And they should stand up for Judaism and they should help the Jewish generation of survival and be with them all the time.

Um, I thank you very much for this interview. And Nancy I really didn't get a chance to talk to you. Can we make another appointment and we'll get you to get down on the interview too?

NF: Okay.

Okay, thank you very much.

NF: Whenever it's convenient for you.


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