I was sitting with my family at the breakfast table drinking milk and eating a piece of burnt toast; that was when I heard the feint sound of sirens coming from the east end of the block. My dads face grew pale and my mother quickly stood up and grabbed my brother and mines hand. She guided us towards the back of the house through a small opening in the floor. Once we reached the hole, she took my brothers hand and placed it in mine, telling him to watch over me. We were put into the hole and she kissed our heads, then covered the little light we had with a rug.
I started to panic, unaware of the destruction and persecution that lay before me on a silver platter. We spent a week in that ditch, although it had felt like a lifetime. All the while, I thought of my parents: where had they gone; would they soon return? One day while we were there, with cramps building up in my legs, I heard footsteps coming from above my head. My brother hoping it was our parents returning to save us from the forever darkness that we faced slid the rug over and peered up with squinting eyes.
The rough man standing above us, however, was not our father, but a man I would soon come to know as, Nazi soldier. The reasons of our taking were not because of crime, but because of my ethnicity, the way I looked, the way I spoke, and even my religion. 2. I was split up from my brother, the only family I had left, when we were put into different groups. I was with the women; he was with the men. I cried that day, not knowing if or when I would ever see my brother again, and the thought of being alone in this horrific place.
We waited in the hot sun for what seemed like hours, but finally we were let in a room where we showered and then guided to a set of chairs lined up in a row. There we sat and had our hair forcefully cut off from our scalp. That was the final piece of myself and my past I had left, and it was gone in a matter of minutes. I was told to put on the rags in front of me and head over to the desks where crowds of people stood before me. I waited patiently behind others that looked much like me, scared and curious.
Once I made it close enough to the front I was able to see the reason of the commotion, there was people behind the tables with ink and a sharp utensil etching into the skin of others a series of jumbled numbers. I was unaware that at that moment those numbers would define me for many years to come. The sting of the pen jabbing into my skin still haunts me to the day. From that day on I would sleep in wooden bunks with strangers, who would become my new family, and yearn for food hat was far from reach in my dreams, and pray for the day I would be saved from this unknown tragedy. The day I was saved is unclear, but the man that saved my life is still clear in my memory. He saved my life and gave me what I needed to survive. 3. I was imprisoned for 6 years, and I am now 18 years old. The world around me has changed drastically since I was taken. My first job since being in America was working as a cleaner in a restaurant, but I later went on to learn English and I went to college and received a degree in business.
I had always been passionate about food, and so I opened my own restaurant that catered to the wants of others like me: home-cooked food from back in Poland. I never did get to see my brother again, and I later found out he had died from an illness in the camp. My parents however, were never taken to the camps; they were taken to the destroyer that took their lives in one flash of fire. I pray to them every night, wishing they could see the family I have created and the love that surrounds me every day of my life that I will be forever grateful for to the man who saved me.