I have done hundreds of blogs on WWII and the Holocaust and it often is difficult to see and read about the horrors inflicted on innocent lives.And at times I feel like giving up because these stories do leave emotional scars, but then sometimes I stumble across stories which lift my soul and give me the drive to go on.
The story of Francine Christophe is one of such stories.
Born on 18th of August 1933, Francine Christophe was deported with her mother to the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in 1944.
Christophe and her mother were brought to the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp when she was a young girl, and her mother took with her two small pieces of chocolate, telling Christophe she would save them for a day when they really felt hopeless. She thought the chocolate would help to give them the strength to carry on.
But the day came unexpectedly, when another prisoner named Helene went into labor. Christophe’s mother asked her, if she would mind sharing her piece of chocolate with Helene. “Giving birth here will be hard,” Christophe says her mother told her. “She may die. If I give her the chocolate, it may help her.”
She agreed and Helene, with the help of a little piece of chocolate, was able to give birth.The baby didn’t cry, it never cried.Six months later, they would be freed from the camp,at that point the baby cried for the first time.
But the true reward for Christophe came just a few years ago, when at the urging of her daughter, she gave a lecture on how survivors would have coped differently if they had had the help of counsellors in their recovery.
A woman came to the podium saying she was a psychiatrist living in Marseille, France. She said she had something to give to Christophe on stage.
The woman came up and placed a piece of chocolate in Christophe’s hand and said, “I am the baby.”
The baby didn’t cry but I did researching this story, but they were happy tears.
The interview with Francine Christophe was part of a documentary called “Human”