Articles by Amy Hirshberg Lederman


Where do I come from?

When my daughter Lauren was in kindergarten, her class took a trip to our local zoo to learn about animals. The children were treated to two beautiful, slightly unusual sights that morning: A newborn lion cub lay curled up sleeping next to its mother and an elephant named Sammie was breastfeeding her baby. When I…


What’s love got to do with it?

In 1984, after an abusive marriage and a stalled career, singer Tina Turner wrote her come-back smash hit “What’s Love Got to Do with It?” The song is actually an anti-love rant, praising carnal love without any emotional attachment. In a gut-wrenching voice, Tina belts out that love is nothing more than a “secondhand emotion”…


A New Year with no regrets

It shouldn’t take a diagnosis of cancer or other life-threatening illness to make us “wake up” to wanting to live our lives more fully. Yet, for many of us, the sense of urgency that comes with having a disease or serious medical condition is often the impetus for just that sort of wake-up call. When…


Finding a path to forgiveness

On a chilly day in February over a decade ago, I drove my mother to the hospital to visit her only sister, Emily. My mother was anxious about seeing her. Not just because of her condition, which bordered on terminal, but because of their relationship, defined by years of unspoken hurt and unfinished conversations. We…


Road trip to paradise

I grew up listening to music on our family’s prized possession, a stereo system nestled deep within a richly oiled mahogany cabinet with two huge speakers that dominated the corners of our living room. Sunday mornings were dedicated to classical music, the afternoons were filled with Broadway musicals and the evenings were a potpourri ranging…


Passover, Me and Bobby McGee

The year was 1968: the Vietnam War was raging, psychedelic music and drugs were “in,” Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated a week before President Johnson signed the  Civil Rights Act and the Beatles released the White Album to mixed reviews. I was about to enter 9th grade and amidst the free love and political…

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