Memory Book for Shoshana Weintraub

The following are the memories those of us have of Shoshana/Shoshi/Shosha :

Entries 140-149

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Visitor: Lydia
Time: April 25, 2007 10:35 PM

I was looking through the posts as I do almost daily, and I read what Louie's mom had posted about our eventful trip to the Town Lake Animal Center. I was reminded of various parts of that trip more strongly than others. I remember the dog (Daphne, I think) getting away once or twice and our game of tossing pebbles into a bucket when the dog we had out was busy investigating some new exciting smell. I am not the best pebble tosser, but Louie had a knack for it. I can't believe it's been almost a year. I think about Louie every day and send my best wishes, comfort, and companionship to her family at this difficult anniversary.

Visitor: Anna Parsons
Time: April 27, 2007 7:20 PM

I can't believe its been a year. A year normaly goes by really fast, but when you lose someone close to you it is like watching a movie in slow motion. Everybody loved Shoshana. Everytime I think of her I can't help but to cry. I am so sorry for your loss, I can't even come close to imagine what it could feel like. Shoshana was always one of the smartest in my texas history class. Our teacher would put us together in groups by what our grades were. If you were in her group, you always knew you were smart. We all miss her so much and none of us will ever forget her.

Visitor: Steven Weintraub
Time: April 27, 2007 7:46 PM

Tonight marks one year.

This time a year ago I was arriving in Chicago with my father. We were trying to flag down a cab to take us to the Chicago morgue. I still don't know how I got through that weekend. I still don't know how I got through this last year. It is only through the knowledge that you, her friends, remember her that we have seen any light.

Please don't forget her. Please keep writing. Bless you all.

I miss Shoshana hourly.

Visitor: Steven Weintraub
Time: April 27, 2007 7:46 PM

As most of you know, Shoshana helped start the youth volunteering at Town Lake Animal Center.

Every year the city recognizes the top volunteers in every department. Last night we attended a volunteer recognition reception given by the city of Austin. At that reception the city announced a new award:

The Shoshana Weintraub Memorial Youth Award

This award is to be given annually to the top youth volunteer in the city (working in a city program). Last night we recieved the award in Shoshana's name. Shoshana was the first recipient of the award.

Visitor: Anne Heinen
Time: April 28, 2007 11:50 AM

t has been a year. Today I will bring my daughter Sasha and Matilda to Shoshana's resting place in the cemetery. They will bring memories and gifts of laughter and tears for their friend who is no longer with us, but who will stay with them all of their lives.

I cannot say I knew Shoshana well. She and Sasha had gotten to know each other just their 7th grade school year, and had really started clicking as the spring semester went along. Sometime in early April 2006, Shoshana and Lydia spent the night at our house. Tina dropped Shoshana off and Steven picked her up. It was a "bring your favorite comedy movie" night, and Shoshana brought Blazing Saddles and The Producers. The girls didn't watch Blazing Saddles that night but since then, when our family has watched it, we've renamed it, "Blazing Saddles: One of Shoshana's favorites." The girls opted for an Austin Powers movie and Young Frankenstein, which Shoshana hadn't seen. They hung out in the living room. I remember Shoshana playing with Lydia's hair as the three girls bantered about the movies and joked with each other.

While she was here, Shoshana didn't reserve herself just for her peers. She easily conversed and joked with everyone, from Sasha's four-year-old and 10-year-old brothers (she mentioned that she had lots of experience, with a younger brother at home) to my husband and me. Shoshana told us about the summer camp she attended, trying out for jazz band and her synagogue. I'm always so happy when Sasha makes new smart, witty and genuine friends, as Shoshana was. I hoped her and Sasha's friendship would flourish.

I last saw Shoshana at Ariel's birthday Bollywood slumber party, comfortably sunk into a couch, checking out her bindi and henna accoutrements. Like at our house, she seemed relaxed, at home and happy. Ariel had a birthday party this year. It was a bring your favorite movie party, and boys were invited too. I imagined that Shoshana would have been there too, if she were still physically with us. And I imagine she was there in spirit.

Visitor: Tricia Hallock
Time: April 28, 2007 5:30 PM

Well Shoshi, It's been a year since I've had you raiding my pantry while waiting for your Mom to pick you up. As we took Laura to Kealing for her trip to New Orleans so many feelings rushed forward. You should've been in the small gym acting like a 14 year old girl like all the other 14 year old girls that were there. Today Laura and her friends are wearing armbands in your memory. Laura and Lydia are both wearing one dragonfly earring because one of yours was lost in Chicago. You have not been forgotten or lost in the clutter of everyday life. Deborah told me she didn't know how hard it would be for her to compete in the Soccer Shootout at Gullet's Field Day. You see, that is where and when she heard of the loss of you. Shoshana, your sweet peppery spirit embues so much of our experiences. Know that you were loved (warts and all) and continue to be loved.

Visitor: Bella
Time: April 28, 2007 5:33 PM

Shoshana was one of the most beautiful people that I will ever know. She was pretty, charming, intelligent, and talented and everyday that I did not spend appreciating her part in my life, I regret. There is no greater pain than of emptiness, and that is why today, I ask of everyone, fill you heart and mind to the utmost with pleasant memories of Shoshana and good wishes to her family.

Shoshana taught me, along with many things, to be appreciative. Her life, while all too short, was exceding bountiful. I can only hope that I will live to be half of the fantastic person that she was.


Visitor: Rona Statman
Time: April 28, 2007 7:14 PM

Tina, Steve and Aaron,

I wanted you to know that we are thinking about you everyday and especially today. We miss Shoshana very much. I had not been to this sight recently and reading many of your entries has brought back some great memories of Shoshana. Tina, you mentioned her big night shirts which I guess is typical because that is what Jordan wears too. Many years ago Shoshana was at one of Jordan's sleepover bithday parties and the girls made night shirts with stencils. Shoshana's had a big butterfly, flowers and a dolphin on the back. I know this because Jordan actually has the one Shoshana made in her drawer. I think she borrowed it from her at one of Shoshana's sleepover birthdays (I think it was in 6th grade)I hope Shoshana didn't miss it too much but if you are missing it we would be happy to bring it over.

I know you all are very proud of Shoshana's award from the animal shelter. Last night at services the Rabbi talked about how teaching children the Torah can bring peace to the world. Shoshana at her young age understood this more than most kids her age. Shoshana brought peace to the world and to her family, friends and animals and will continue to do so. Take care.

With love, Rona, Larry, Jordan and Jeremy

Visitor: Kate Bennett
Time: April 28, 2007 10:42 PM

Tina, Steven and Aaron,

Every day of this long year, Shoshana's name and memory have been present in our home. We grieve, and laugh, and love in her name. And we hold the three of you in our hearts.

Here's how I learned about Shoshana. Lydia came home from school the first week of 7th grade (her first at Kealing) and told me that she had 'a new best friend.' I asked what her friend's name was and she said 'Louie.' OK, fine. The following week she was yakking about her friend Shoshana. Shoshana this, Shoshana that. I asked what happened to Louie. Well, it was one and the same child. Somehow on that first day of school in (I think) social studies Lydia heard Louie when Shoshana name was called for attendance. While I've never figured out how Lydia could have heard one for the other, the name stuck in our house.

Tina, one day we talked on the phone. While we barely knew one another I was grateful for the gift you gave me - the gift of being able to listen. During that call you said that you were worried that Shoshana would be forgotten. I want you to know that in our home that hasn't happened, and it never will. Shoshana's horse sketches that you gave Lydia are framed and hanging in her room. The photos of Shoshana are on Lydia's desk. Shoshana has had a profound influence on all of us, and gives us a daily gift of being present in the face of our love for one another.

Today and always, our thoughts and prayers are with you, your family and your friends.

Kate Bennett and Bruce Truitt

Visitor: Ariel "Pelly" Godwin
Time: April 28, 2007 11:25 PM

There's no one in town I know
You gave us someplace to go
I never said thank you for that
Thought I might get one more chance

It has now been 365 days since Shoshana, dearly beloved and friend of us all, passed away.

365 days - an exercise of grief. Days passed where, try as I might, I could not remember the sound of her voice, or the way her eyes crinkled up when she laughed. Days where, in the most unexpected moments, when I was laughing so hard I could hardly breathe, I suddenly remembered that Shoshana was not there, and that she would never be with me, sharing this laughter, again. Days I felt guilty because I was full of joy when I felt I should still be in mourning. Sometimes I'm not quite sure how I made it through the first week of loss. Every minute, every second, was a terse reminder that there was a huge hole in my life, one that nobody could fill.

What would you think of me now?
So lucky
So strong
So proud
Never said thank you for that
Now I'll never have a chance

The experiences that I won't be able to give to her make me feel like my heart is breaking. Philosophical discussions during lunchtime, food fights, news events, or things as simple as a snowfall in Texas or complicated as falling in love. Can she still see my actions; feel the mixed emotions of happiness and grief as I go through my life without her? I wonder this as I continue along my path, wishing desperately that she was still on hers.

I remember Shoshana as a clever, funny, fantastic human being. She was incredibly smart, holding more knowledge than one her age usually would. Her ideas were both creative and hilarious. She never stretched the bounds of friendship. Instead, she made every friendship deeper and closer than others with less courage would. When I think that I was not worthy of her friendship, remembering that she chose me to be friends with lets me go on through the day - regretful, but not devoid of hope.

May angels lead you in
Hear you me my friends
On sleepless roads the sleepless go
May angels lead you in

The fact that she was so energetic, vivacious and beautiful makes her death all the more tragic. To this day, reading the guestbook at revives memories of her, all the stronger for their age. It's like pulling open the cover of an old scrapbook you haven't looked at in ages, realizing that you were a different person when the pictures were taken, and that the people in them have changed as well. I can see Shoshana through all the facets that she was to others, and fully appreciate her glory. In many of these comments, the poster remarked that when they first heard about Shoshana's death, they couldn't believe it or tried to deny the fact. I felt the same way myself when I got the news. First there was denial, then anger, bargaining, depression.

Finally, there was acceptance.

If you were with me tonight
I'd sing to you just one more time
A song for a heart so big, god wouldn't let it live

I know that Shoshana is dead, but at the same time, she lives on in all those who knew her. She was far too bright and lively not to have left part of herself behind. And reading these comments, I know that memories of her face and voice may fade, but the change she caused in the people she met will never be forgotten. Like amber preserved from millions of years ago, Shoshana remains in our hearts, a special part of her tucked away inside. By sharing these memories, you are not only letting some of the grief from her passing go, you are also contributing to the memories of everyone else who reads this.

Shoshana's face looks at me from every "V for Vendetta" comic book, from every Spiderman t-shirt, from every soccer field. She looks at me from the stones of Kealing Middle School, and the rose bushes by Central Market, and from the forget-me-not blue of the sky itself. Shoshana, you will remain with us always.

I try to live my life the way Shoshana would like me to. I know that it's hard to appreciate your daily blessings when you are in constant contact with them, but now that Shoshana is gone, I've realized that that method won't work. So I try to be thankful for all the joy life sends my way each day of my life. As another friend of mine said once, "Model yourself after her, and if you come half as close, you're all right." So I try. It makes the grief easier to bear, and it lets her continue, though her body is in the ground, to fly.

May angels lead you in
Hear you me my friends
On sleepless roads the sleepless go
May angels lead you in

365 days.

It seems like a long time, doesn't it?

                -Ariel Godwin
Lyrics from "Hear You Me," by Jimmy Eat World.

Entries 140-149

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