As the Jewish New Year begins, I find myself with mixed emotions. Tonight, our family celebrated alone. I worked today, we took our son to the doctor, we grabbed lunch, and then I took my daughter to her piano lesson. An ordinary day.
After the piano lesson, I went to pick up the special kugel I bought thinking that I might cook a nice dinner for the holiday, but it didn't happen. My daughter and I had an interesting conversation about how we observe Judaism and why my insides don't match my outsides. How is it that we are so connectedly Jewish outside our home and to our community, but once we step in our house, we are struggling to find our Jewish spirituality in our home.
I have been on a path of learning for the past 10 years, more seriously the last 3 years. Meditation, Torah study, conversations with Rabbis, and even a little Hebrew to give me more confidence. I see this only growing. I love going to shul to be part of the community and it gives me great joy and satisfaction. My husband is on a path also, engaged in the community and as a teacher at a Jewish school. My kids go to a Jewish day school and get a beautiful and rich Jewish education.
We are all immersed in the Jewish community and yet, inside our home, you could never tell. Our home is not kosher; I cook for my family, but don't feel comfortable inviting others over to our non-kosher home; and frankly, our lives have been so busy outside the home that being at home alone is the only time I can relax. There is not one answer. I could easily bring in kosher food, cook only vegetarian and at least, invite over those I know won't care.
Something stops me. Time, energy, insecurity, and life. In 5775, I want more. I want more than to be a guest. I want to invite people in - to study, to share, and to eat.
And I will also forgive myself for creating a life that is busy within a community that I love so much.
Wishing everyone a year of growing, forgiving, and taking the opportunities that are given to you and making them special and important.