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Posts Tagged ‘connection’

I want to be seen. I want to be heard. I want to be known.

My guess is that most of us feel the same way.

Relationships can be a gift and a challenge. In truth, they are always evolving. . .isn’t everything? When things are good, we are able to coast together with our loved ones, but we don’t always navigate from the same foundation as our lovers and/or friends.

A year ago, my heart was broken by a man I adored. We weren’t partners, but the intensity of our nearly 8.5 year connection dramatically changed leaving me profoundly sad. So far we have found a way to maintain our friendship. For me this was actually not a given, I was too sad for that. Today I am feeling grateful, although it has also been just under a year since I have seen him. I am wondering how it will go if and when we cross paths again.

Given time, healing happens. Hearts mend. Cleansing tears dry. Insight emerges. And moving forward becomes a reality.

While I may miss him deeply, it’s not necessarily the way one would think. It may not even be the way I thought it would be. Metaphorically speaking, I miss his touch and his caress. I miss the intense connection that always felt magnetic.

Our connection was always profound to me – in multifaceted ways. I miss being able to share my soul and the deep connection when he shared his.

Perhaps what I miss most is talking to someone that really connects with me AND craves our connection too.

I miss the friendship of someone who wants to deeply:

See me. Hear me. Know me.

Feeling grateful for the light bulb moment that somehow brought me new insights & some new cleansing tears one year after my heart was broken.

I got this, and I always have!

Onward with love, light, & blessings,

Chava

broken hearted
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Three Deaths in Two Weeks

The gift is often the challenge.

Professionally, I have always worked within community.  For the most part, I have been blessed to work in the synagogue world.  Within that role, I have had the opportunity to connect deeply with many people from staff to congregants and their families too.  My students, their parents, my teachers, and their families have always become a part of my life.  And now is no different; I work the aged, most if not all are in the last years of their life.  My guess is that regardless of where I work or where I choose to be, I will always build relationships with those that surround me.

People are born; people die.  And in the middle of it all, people live.   They have experiences that fill their lives – including gifts and challenges.

Life is full of cycles

Life is full of cycles.

Over the last two weeks, I have been touched by the strength and integrity of the living and the pain and/or resolve of death.  And in the middle of it all, I have been touched by those that have lived and those that have died.

Three Deaths in Two Weeks

Loving people is what I do; no one is a stranger for long.  All are welcomed into my life including my home.  And within each connection, I try to give fully and be as present as I can be.  Sometimes people are part of my life for moments, sometimes for hours, sometimes for days, and sometimes much longer.  And for that moment that I am blessed to be in a relationship, whether a close friend or for a momentary exchange of words, I treasure the moments however large or small.

Within my work, I build relationships.  And within each relationship, I care deeply.  Whether I connect with people daily, once a week, or only on the holidays, they impact my life and I pray that I impact their lives for good.  Often I do, sometimes I don’t.    The bottom-line is that I hope and pray that most of my connections are full of light and positive energy.  When people go through hard times, I struggle with them – it is simply what I do.  And when they live fully, I celebrate with them – that is also what I do.

Three Deaths in Two Weeks

So far in two weeks, I have gone to one funeral, one shiva minyan (memorial service), and another funeral on Sunday.  I also needed to help transition a client, who is now a friend, to a 24-hour care facility.  She is having a rough transition; her husband is profoundly sad too.  Life keeps moving forward.

Today, I saw a baby in a sling and a toddler eating dinner with his parents and puppy.  I also had a few hours talking and hanging out with my 17 year old son.  Life keeps moving forward.

Life-cycles happen.  I am learning to say good-bye with more regularity than I wish, I am also learning to take note of the life that surrounds me.  The baby, the toddler, the aging, and everyone in between.  I am also noticing the birds and the saguaro cacti; I am watching pomegranates thrive on a tree and flowers open and close on the cacti.  And each evening I look up at the sky and I take note of the moon and her cycle.  I am also waiting and hoping the sky opens up and the rain comes storming into my beautiful desert.

Life. Death. Everything in between.

May I treasure what is and continue to build relationships with the living.  And when people die, may I remember them and honor them by continuing to build connections with the living.

Three Deaths in Two Weeks

People matter and each of these three souls impacted my life for good.

l’Shalom – May their souls go towards peace.

 

 

 

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Networking has always been a part of the world; Human beings connect with people to seek information, share skills, and help one another.

Today’s networking is different than the networking of 10-15 years ago because people who know each other and virtual strangers alike are literally lending a metaphoric hand.  People are willing to share without payment or expectation. Kindness permeates the social networking world as well as strengthens human relationships.

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Friends share their reservoir of knowledge easily and without question.   Sometimes they even share their hearts and souls.   Over the past years, I have received and shared everything from simple to complex information including:

  • news
  • recipes
  • music
  • lesson plans
  • information to save the world and human lives
  • health information
  • coaching
  • photos
  • emotional support
  • philosophical insight
  • finding safe houses for those in need
  • Judaic knowledge
  • political insight
  • tech resources
  • friendship
  • inspiration
  • trails to hike
  • jobs
  • skills
  • etc

The list is infinite, really infinite. . . .each day I am amazed at the interconnectedness of the world through social media.  With a few clicks of your smart phone or your mouse, you share.

Even today, I was trying to equate the virtual connections with karma, but was looking for a Jewish value to connect to this idea.  Karma is not a Jewish concept per se.  So I went onto FB and asked.  I received two answers that resonated with me from three people.  Mitzvah k’neged mitzvah* (measure for measure or good deed leads to a good deed) and basheret (it was meant to be).  The conversation was fun and made a few of us think.  When you take the time to share what you know, you ultimately receive it back ten-fold. People tend to want to give freely and ultimately you never know how the connections will help people make a living, find answers to unsolved questions, or feel loved.

I was trained to share through working in one of the noblest professions I know.  Jewish Education. Educators, by enlarge, share freely and try to help their colleagues be the best educators they can be.  I have found that when my teaching or administrative experiences seem to be at a lacking, my colleagues are always up for helping me work through whatever challenges I am facing.  In truth, I would say this to be true for most Jewish communal professionals that I have worked with, not just the educators.  Anyways, aren’t we all educators?

About 6 years ago, I realized the enormous power of networking when my son and I needed a place to stay in California for an extended period of time.  With little or no extra money and fear of the unknown, we were faced with the darkest period of our family’s life when Aryeh needed to have brain surgery to save his life.  Ultimately, my connection with the national organization paid off, via email I reached out to friends and family around the globe and asked for help.  Many people offered and in the end I stayed with one dear friend who I had known through my beloved and now defunct organization, CAJE (Coalition for the Advancement of Jewish Educators).  Through networking we found everything we needed including a car.

Today, I watch with fascination how organizations like Facebook, Twitter, 140edu Conference and Darim Online have transformed my life.  Each of the above resources are there when I need them.  I can post a serious question, a curiosity, an emotion online and I will get feedback.  It is beautiful.  I am now living in Tucson, Arizona far from the worlds I have lived on the east coast.  Regardless, my friends and colleagues are still answering questions from Montana to Brazil, from New York City to Oregon.  The internet has enabled me to remain connected to the larger world and to feel supported in all my endeavors.

Over the last years, I have learned to love people I have yet to meet.  When I had major surgery two and half years ago, friends from all over send me healing words to put on my vision board. People care; people are giving.  Most of the folks who mailed me words on beautiful paper were friends that I had kept in touch via social media.

Over time, I have learned to ask for what I want and need; some are willing to give, some not.  Each person has to find a balance that makes them feel comfortable. I have asked professional photographers if I could post their photo on my blog who often say sure.  The key is to always give credit for any information you receive.  And to graciously accept when someone responds no.  Everyone is navigating life with the tools they have. Some people are concerned that if they share, they might hurt themselves professionally.  Ironically that seems to be furthest from the truth.  The more you give, the more people want to support your endeavors both financially and  emotionally.

Professionally, I received a huge gift two or three years ago when I watched a webinar from 140 Characters Conference.  Information about Jeff Keni Pulver’s brainchild can be found at 140edu.com.  For two days I became riveted by what this conference offered.  Following this conference, I was able to receive information via Twitter from some of the most amazing educators of all time; the experience of learning from some of the wisest people I have ever encountered in my life was empowering.  Holy Wow!!! I haven’t stopped learning from these people that give so unselfishly.  It all started because Jeff Keni Pulver, and perhaps others, had a vision.

Networking has opened up my world.  Today I have an amazing job, I am starting a non-profit, I am editing two books, writing my own books, blogging with a following, helping other people work towards their dreams, and more.

Opportunities are flowing; my spirit is soaring.  Networking has added to the quality of my life.

If you haven’t been networking yet, give it a try. . . .

 

*mitzvah – more accurately means commandment, but in this case good deed works too.

 

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