Teofila Silberring

This is my recent photo taken by Zosia Zeleska about a year ago here in Cracow. She lives in New York and is in artistic photography, she's an assistant to a famous photographer from Cracow, Richard Horowitz. Zosia was very close to my son when they were children.

I was never sad. Never. I didn't allow it, because I'd had enough sad years. So I made the most of life wherever I could. For years I refused interviews. Whoever called me, I refused. But then they started persuading me that it's for history, so that the memory doesn't die. Because when we're no longer here there won't be anyone to tell it, because there won't be anyone from our generation left. Only the second and third, who have heard about it. That's not the same.

I've always felt strong. There's never been anything wrong with me. I never thought that anything could be wrong with me. And then some time ago my leg started to hurt. We have this surgery for prisoners at 64 Dietla Street, maintained by the Kolbe-Werk, by the Germans. They sent me a date for the operation, but in Blakenburg. I wrote to Germany asking them very nicely to operate on me in Berlin, because I could get there. And they agreed, but it took nearly six months. They put me in this accommodation, a beautiful apartment, and the operation was literally three days later. The care! Here I would still have a long wait for conditions like those. From the start they gave me a physiotherapist, a Pole, in fact, and three days later, when I got up, he was there with me, teaching me to walk. And there, seven months ago, I was walking better. Now unfortunately I walk with a crutch.