Brachi Drutman may have lost her mom, her sight, and her hearing – but that won’t stop her from being in control of her own destiny. Enrolled in a program to become an accountant, the 20-year-old Bnei Brak native is currently studying to establish her career. Because she is legally blind & deaf, the classwork and tests admittedly take more effort for her than for other students. That has not deterred her, however, from working toward her degree.
As is the case with many, Brachi’s strength came from suffering: Her mother passed away due to cancer when she was very young, leaving a devastated family behind to mourn. Father Aryeh Drutman, a melamed, has raised them in her absence. Throughout the years, their financial situation has ranged from difficult to desperate.
Recently came news which gave much needed joy to the Drutman family: Brachi is engaged, to a young man who is known for his impeccable character. He is also deaf.
Engagement is a financially stressful time for any bride and groom. For Brachi Drutman and her chassan, however, it is particularly intense:
“I am getting married without my mother. I miss her,” says Brachi, in moving video footage. Brachi’s video address includes a heart wrenching clip of the young bride praying over her mother’s grave. With tears in her nearly sightless eyes, she shuckels back and forth over a siddur.
Brachi and her chassan have faced many challenges in life so far, and have endured bravely. Their latest challenge, however, seems insurmountable: they are currently struggling to make even the most basic wedding. Brachi dreams of getting married “like everyone else” – with a simple hall, a simple dress, and the ability to host sheva brachos. Without help, however, she won’t be able to pull it off.
Hachnasas kallah is an essential and common mitzvah, and kallah funds are not atypical. This couple, however, is anything but “typical.” Those close to the families involved hope that the sheer uniqueness of their struggles, combined with the happiness and bravery with which they have endured those struggles, will help to bring their story to the forefront of reader’s minds and hearts.