Yesterday (November 24) was my birthday on the Hebrew calendar and on the Gregorian calendar. I take a childlike delight in my birthday so this rare coincidence gave me additional pleasure. Like most women I balk as the numbers go up but this year I am relishing the higher number and giving thanks for my aging earth suit, also known as my body. As the years fly by and I witness too many untimely deaths, I am more committed to appreciating the gift of aging. My birthday always falls the week of Thanksgiving – another coincidence for which I am grateful. It is nice for me to share a slice of this week with extended family and to enjoy the holiday energy pulsating around me as people gear up for our national festival of gratitude.
Yesterday my first birthday treat came in the morning, when I had the privilege of accompanying a 10 month old baby to the mikvah. Some Jewish parents take their child to the mikvah to confer or affirm Jewish status if the mother or birthmother is not Jewish. This family, formed by adoption, made that decision and brought their lovely daughter to the community mikvah at Temple Beth Hillel/Beth El. It is always a privilege to accompany people to the mikvah but the bonus of holding this girl, this soulful bundle of sweetness and possibility, nourished me and touched me deeply. It is from that place - grounded in hope and love – that I wish to write to you.
I have wanted to write a new blog entry for the past two weeks, addressing the waves of hatred and fear that keep knocking us down. But as these waves manifest – in terrorism, in racism, in the gun violence that plagues our country and routinely takes out our neighbors in Chester, in too many ways – I have found that there is too much to say and that words are profoundly inadequate. But today, tucked in between these 2 days of sweetness, I can write to you. (Click "read more")