Rebecca Masinter

Parshas Yisro - Seven Names Seven Daughters

Rebbetzin Henny Machlis taught a beautiful insight into Parshas Yisro which is shared in the book “Emunah with Love and Chicken Soup”. The Torah tells us that Yisro had seven names and also seven daughters. His seven names parallel the seven daughters because each child brings out a different aspect of its parent. Each child stretches the parent in different ways and challenges him to become a better person in different ways for each child. We grow and adapt to be different mothers for each of our children at each of their stages. Sometimes mothers feel badly that they can’t do with their younger children what they were able to do with their older ones when they were little. Occasionally mothers feel badly that their older children had parents who were novices and clueless while their younger kids have the benefit of experienced parents. The lesson from Yisro’s seven names is that we are supposed to be different for each child and for each stage. It isn’t a goal for us to try and do everything the same for each child. We rejoice at our growth and embrace the change as we parent each child individually. Even if it feels we are giving less to some than we gave to others, we can trust that Hashem is giving each child the mother that is best for him or her at all times.