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Posts Tagged ‘Counting of the Omer’

Note: I will be Counting the Omer for a total of 49 days, from Passover to Shavuot or from Slavery to Freedom.  For many, this is simply the Counting the Omer; for me, it is a time to actively reflect on different middot (character traits) that will lead me to my own rebirth.

Middah (character trait) focus: sense of wonder

Chava - New Glasses

Today I got new glasses.  While it might not seem like a big deal for most of my friends for me it was enormous.  I have needed new glasses for months, maybe even longer.  With finances what they have been, I had to wait until now.  And guess what? I am profoundly grateful to be able to see better!!! I didn’t know what I was missing until I got I put on the new glasses today.  And yet, I tend to see the beauty that surrounds me, only now I will see more of it.

This afternoon, I seemed to recieve a renewed sense of wonder for my home in the desert.  Beauty is surrounding me at every turn; I can see much more clearly, everything seems more vivid. Wow!!! Vision is truly a gift.

May each of us see the beauty that surrounds us as we walk in the world.  May we sense the wonder with all of our senses.

Sending blessings and light, Chava

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Note: I will be Counting the Omer for a total of 49 days, from Passover to Shavuot or from Slavery to Freedom.  For many, this is simply the Counting the Omer; for me, it is a time to actively reflect on different middot (character traits) that will lead me to my own rebirth.

Humor brought us to this day - Aryeh's graduation from Fairhaven School.

Humor brought us to this day – Aryeh’s graduation from Fairhaven School.

Middah (character trait) focus: Humor

A few hours or maybe a day after Aryeh had been intubated, he stood up for the first time in what felt like forever.  I was so relieved to have my baby (he was 14 years old) alive even if we weren’t yet sure how he would emerge from his brain surgery.  As he stood tentatively for the first time following surgery and the days that followed, I found myself amazed so I said, “I am looking up to you.” He gave me a quizative look, so I continued, “not because of everything you gone through, but because you are now taller than me.  You grew while you were intubated.”

To be honest, there was almost nothing positive about the years that Aryeh struggled for his life.  Each and every day was a living hell, yet we found moments to laugh and moments of light.  I believe that the only reason we were able to emerge from our years of profound darkness was because we laughed.  We laughed at the stupid things that we saw.  We found joy in simple moments with friends.  We had to giggle when having the same meal four nights in a row because there were weeks when no one could figure out what to cook for us and all of our dietary needs.  You should have heard some of the ludicrous things people would say as they tried to process all that was going on with us; they really did want to say the ‘right’ thing.  We laughed because we needed a moment to decompress from all of the travesties that were continuing to emerge.  Finding humor in the most ridiculous moments kept us sane; laughter kept us alive.

Life can be hard, really hard.  May we be blessed to find humor as we navigate all that life has to offer.

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Note: I will be Counting the Omer for a total of 49 days, from Passover to Shavuot or from Slavery to Freedom.  For many, this is simply the Counting the Omer; for me, it is a time to actively reflect on different middot (character traits) that will lead me to my own rebirth.

Middah (character trait) focus:  Giving and Receiving with a full heart

Throughout life, I am someone who loves to give and be present for others, but who also struggles when it comes to receiving what my friends and loved ones want to offer.  Yet sometimes I reach out like I did when I recently decided to post the following status line on Facebook:

Sundays are never easy these days. While I smile and choose not to sit in darkness, I still find it difficult to wrap up what originally brought me to Tucson. Two weeks from today, I will be doing my final wrap-ups and leaving what I had believed would be a great experience when I initially moved here two years ago. May the transition for Temple be a good one and may I land on my feet so that I can take care of my family and love what I am doing too!!

After recieving 41 likes and 32 comments of support, I was blown away by the love and care that was flowing and continues to flow.  Every comment was filled with loving advice, hope, and encouragement.  So even though I am trying to navigate the darkness that I feel around my upcoming job transition; I am also feeling incredibly supported as well as hopeful that the right door will open.

I am also acutely aware that as a human being it is my responsibility to not only receive support, but give it as well.  My hope and prayer is that I am as giving as my friends. Sometimes help comes by listening as people navigate their lives, by doing what needs to be done when people need a hand, and sometimes I can pray or vision for people’s needs to be met.

A great illustration can be found in the artistic version of the tzadi, the Hebrew letter; When you look at my friend Jennifer Judelsohn’s work, you get get a sense that in order to be balanced, you should give and receive from your full heart.

Drawing courtesy of Jennifer Judelsohn from her book Songs of Creations

Drawing courtesy of Jennifer Judelsohn from her book Songs of Creations

 

In her book Songs of Creation: meditations on the sacred hebrew alphabet, Jennifer Judelsohn reminds those reflecting over her words and artwork that:

Tzadi commands us to open our hearts in service to others.

At the same time she also invites us to explore how we receive the gifts that come our way.

May we all be blessed to give and to receive with a full heart.

With light and blessings, Chava

PS- For more information on Jennifer Judelsohn’s book and her amazing work, please check out – http://www.soulworksstudio.com/Store.en.html#Songs_of_Creation

 

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Note: I will be Counting the Omer for a total of 49 days, from Passover to Shavuot or from Slavery to Freedom.  For many, this is simply the Counting the Omer; for me, it is a time to actively reflect on different middot (character traits) that will lead me to my own rebirth.

Middah (character trait) focus: Believe

 

Sometimes we need a reminder that we have what it takes to move forward. . .so I made my simple memento :)

Sometimes we need a reminder that we have what it takes to move forward. . .so I made my simple memento 🙂

Sometimes life gives you more than you think you can handle.  As an optimist, I often find the gifts in the challenges, but lately it is a little easier said than done.  I have blocks of time when the struggle feels a little more scary than I can handle.  And knowledge that the bills are barely getting paid is overwhelming.  Yet I am also lucky, my dark moods rarely stay that way for too long.  Mostly I believe that the sun will come out soon and life will get easier.  Seeing reminders that foster positive feelings can definitely be a good thing.

Last spring was a little rough.  Ironically at the the time, I did not know that things would get even more difficult – in retrospect that was probably a good thing.  Anyway one day during that time period, a friend of mine called and asked me what do I need as I walk through all that is going on.  My response was courage, strength, and hope; and just like that the words appeared.  So I used a postcard from my favorite cafe/bar, Cafe Passe, and I made a little memento as a reminder of what I need to walk through life.

May I always have the courage to do what I need to do, the strength to move forward, and hope as I navigate this journey.  With each step I take may I believe in myself and the universe; may this be true for you and your journey too!

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