Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Miriam Monczyk-Laczkowska Ferber - December 7, 1999


Let me ask you a couple questions about this. The long way it was to come from Sosnowiec in an apartment where there was no plumbing to New York or Detroit from saying catechism to reading Talmud. Did you ever just sit and think about what this has meant for your, for your life, for your mind?

You see, I could really sit in the corner, indulge myself every minute of the day and feel uh, the feeling. Sometimes I do, but not for, for too long. I feel that um, even though I did not go through any physical abuse and, uh. By the trauma of separating and the trauma of going from one extreme to another left a tremendous mark on me. Because I still live double life. I have--I mean, in my head I know who I am and I love who I am. But in my heart, I do have identity crisis. Not in terms of religion, but when I go to Poland, I am one of them.


It's not that I need to pretend to be one of them, I'm one of them. And I can sit today at the Christmas um, dinner and sing all the um, you know, songs, the, the carols, you know. And I can um, Christmas carols, the Silent Night and the other ones and I can feel very much at home. And I can have a Chanukah night and I feel very proud and Jewish and I love to, to do that, you know.

Do your children know this whole story?

They do, they do and they don't. They don't, you know. First of all, I have a tape from Poland that I interviewed everyone. So uh, not my mother, she was dead already, but, uh. And my sister also died early. But um, I do have it on tape and one day they will uh, you know, listen to it. It's very hard to tell the children everything that uh, that happened to me because they will not comprehend. And I think with everything that happened to me, it, it made me much more compassionate and, and loving and caring and uh, smothering probably. You know, I smother my kids so much because of um, what I went through. But, um.

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