Though very excited on her husband’s behalf when he won the presidential elections just under 18 months ago, she never imagined that this would make her a public figure as well, Nechama Rivlin on Wednesday told a visiting delegation of a dozen women leaders from the UJA Federation of New York.
Rivlin said that while people refer to her as the First Lady, she prefers to be known as the wife of the president. She told the women about her background as the daughter of pioneers and of growing up with a love for nature on a moshav. She later studied botany, biology and zoology at the Hebrew University.
She also spoke of developing her love for art, both classical and modern, following her retirement and mentioned her three children and numerous grandchildren. She was likewise very frank about the severe respiratory illness which necessitates her having an oxygen tank close at hand.
Rivlin commented on the restrictions that have been placed on her since the wave of stabbings in Jerusalem began.
Whereas she could move around freely without a bodyguard before, she is now enveloped in security, which means that she can’t go out as much as she used to, which she finds very frustrating.