Tuesday, July 1, 2014

the ugly truth

What does one say? What is there to say? 

I feel compelled to write about it. It almost seems flippant if I don't. 
On the other hand, how does once reduce such a horrific event to words?

I was on the train yesterday, and all these people were going about their days..listening to music, playing candy crush, watching the latest episode of "Orange is the New Black" and I wanted to shout!

DON'T YOU KNOW WHAT JUST HAPPENED?! 
HOW CAN YOU JUST GO ABOUT YOUR DAY!!

but the truth is, I also had to just go about my day. I had to study I had to go to school. My life was basically the same as it usually is. Nothing really different. I couldn't afford the time to be down and depressed. 
As callous as it sounds..there really wasn't much for me to do at that point and I had to do what i had to do, much to my dismay. 

the other truth is that people are dying everyday. There are people of all walks of life dying from things as simple as the flu, to stage 4 brain cancer. Children dying of malnutrition and malaria. Babies dying of bacterial infections. People are trafficked, children are kidnapped, girls and boys are raped. There is spousal abuse, child abuse, elder abuse.. the list just goes on and on and on. 

The truth is that the world is a terrible place. I stopped reading the news. Its too much. I cant handle. There is so much evil in the world. So much death. So much sadness. How dare I get up in the morning and watch a dumb YouTube video when right here in my own city, children don't have food to eat? when a mother sits in the hospital praying that her child opens her eyes?! 

How do I dare have the gall, the audacity to complain about a difficult school schedule? How do i have the chutpzpa to complain about my precious few hours of sleep, when there are people who never sleep, people who are up all night holding the hands of their loved ones never knowing which moment will be their last?

these questions plague me. I don't know. But another truth...is that we cant possibly care. We cant live our lives in the shadows of death. It is all around us, all you have to do is watch the news. 
We are biologically tuned to care more for those that we are related to. 
so why did this affect me more than any other news or school stabbings or yet another story of teenage rape?

its simple, these boys are our boys, my brothers, as distant as they are from me geographically, we are all one family as cheezy as it sounds. It was my mothers birthday yesterday and i couldn't bear to tell her the news because i knew it would devastate her...and i thought she deserved one day all to herself. 

but as much as I am affected by the tragedy...i still have to live my life. I still have tests to take, classes to attend, notes to take, charts to make. I don't sit shiva, I am listening to music...I am not outwardly mourning..I cant. Maybe if i was a better person i would..but right now..the ugly truth is that i have too much to do to stop my life. 

The families of these boys are scions of strength and emunah. We always lament the fact that it takes disaster for the divided Jewish people to unite..but somehow it happens over and over and over again...we don't seem to learn our lesson and this history repeats itself. 

Hashem please have mercy on our people, we cant seem to learn our lesson, please don't try to keep teaching it. We can't afford any more grief and loss. 

May Hashem comfort the mourners of Tzion 

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

ENOUGH!

its been a while..not sure if anyone reads anymore..but write i will if only for myself.

its gotten to the point where people just look and me and they pity me. I am almost 26, not married with no prospects in sight and I have been told that people think
im not serious,
my resume is all wrong,
i dress wrong,
i dont meet enough people,
hmm what other reasons can we come up with..
i dont meet enough shadchanim,
my hair is too short,
its too long,
im too frum ,
im not frum enough,
the boys are picky,
i'm picky
im too smart
i intimidate
im asking for too much
my biological clock is ticking
....
the list goes on and on and on bemoaning the many reasons of my single hood..yet the one factor that no one seems to look at is that this is the one thing in my life that i really have very little control over.

I have told people over and over and over again. I refuse to pretend to be someone I am  not. No one wins in that situation. No one comes out on top. Yes, i may be married for 5 minutes. But I know myself. I know that I am not the kinda person who will just sit there and take it from a relationship that is superficial and stifling.

Marriage for the sake of marriage just isn't the goal for  me. You don't need to remind me that you want grand-kids or that you want to tell people that you have news for once. This is MY life. I WANT kids, I want to be happy and there is only so much i can sacrifice for someone else.

Yes, it would be lovely for me to meet someone who just came in and swept me off my feet. Who was intelligent, Persian, funny, adventurous, learned, witty, "frum but with it", someone from out of town who understand why I cannot imagine ever raising my family in NYC...yes all those things would be lovely.

Of course we all have to settle, we have to compromise, and no one is perfect, you marry the person you deserve..all this is true and I am acutely aware, but please please stop trying to sell me off. Stop with the guilt trips. Stop making this MY FAULT! Because you know what..it is not.

Gd is in control, this is His world and I am just living in it. Just a puppet in His play. I am doing the best with the challenges that He has given me. My "rich white girl problems" are the ones that I am dealing with. Maybe I should be a better person and take on more..but I cant, please understand

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Freedom?

The semester is officially over for a paltry five days..so I finally have some time.

Pesach is supposed to be a holiday celebrating freedom. We are commanded to feel as if we ourselves have left Mitzrayim. It is not a holiday commemorating a day that happened all those years ago. It is one celebrating the freedom that I, AM, is experiencing today in 2014. We sing Hallel and praise Hashem for His greatness and kindness, thanking Him for saving us from an exile that would have surely decimated us had we stayed a minute longer.

But how many of us felt that freedom Seder night? Sitting around the table with the same people as last year, reading the same words, asking the same questions, most of us barely sitting up straight from exhaustion..please tell me..how many of us felt truly free? Spiritually free? Physically free?

We are privileged to live in a time where we are physically free. We live in a time that is so politically correct, anti-semitism is not an obvious obstacle. ( just to be clear, i am painfully aware that it still lives and breathes in the US just that it is more subtle than in generations past) As for spiritually free? I have never felt less free. I recently heard this quote "the older we get the further we get from who we think we are" and it reverberated so deeply within me and scared me witless.

I often think about who I am, and how I got here and how in heavens name is this my life? Is this the person that I imagined myself to be at 25? Is this the person that I want to be the mother of my children? and the answer is usually no. I have had to allow myself some vices, and just let things be right now. There are only so many things that a person can take at a time.

Doing PA school for the second time? pretty much takes up all my head space right now. Just dealing with the fact that it is happening is painful on so many levels. I have to remind myself almost daily that this was the right decision and that Gd wants me here and this is what I am supposed to be doing. I am so focused on the right now I can't expend any extra brain space on what it is that I am doing wrong and what i need to be fixing to be the person that I am supposed to be.

Its kinda like spiritual growth has taken a sabbatical. Just working on getting through the day today and I will take on tomorrow..well... tomorrow.

When the Jews left Egypt 4/5 got left behind. They didn't want to be free. It was easier to be a slave. At least then nothing changed. Inertia took over. Staying was easier than moving. And that is the definition of death, not moving standing still while the world moves on around you. I am living like a zombie and very much enslaved..but it just has to be OK for now.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Just Lovely

it is absolutely beautiful! the sun has come out and so should those funky shades!

days like this, make you happy to be alive, make you want to feel the grass between your toes ( if you could actually find any grass in this city) makes you want to do everything outside. I actually don't mind studying if i can do it outside with the sun shining, loading up on the vitamin D!

Chodesh Tov! Thank you to the Creator of the World for this wonderful present. Pesach is definitely in the air! I plan on enjoying this gorgeous day! Maybe even go to juggling at Bryant park..who knows what the day holds :)

Sunday, March 23, 2014

....nothing too original

another week come and gone, time passing like the wind, so fast and as much as you would like to, you cant seem to grab a hold of it.

A few of my friends recently turned 26, and i am not far behind. Its an interesting position to be in. Being a quarter of a century old. I remember being 19-20 talking about those girls..those older singles..the 24-25 years old. Now that's me.

The statistics on the ever tragic shidduch crisis is that 10% of girls don't get married. Yet, somehow everyone thinks that it wont be her. G-d forbid they should even entertain the idea. But you know what, it is possible, and its not all that crazy that I or someone I know never gets married. We all know that woman in our own community, shes bright, beautiful, interesting and yet shes 45 and not married. Its too easy to say that she is being picky and that at this point its her own fault.

But you know what, I don't even know how the time passed, how is it that this is my third year living in NY? How is it that high school was 8! EIGHT years ago?! I remember when i turned 18 and a friend told me that I was halfway to 36, now I'm halfway to 50!

I'm not sure what the point of this ramble is, except for that remember to enjoy life, find small things that make you happy, and don't get bogged down with today because you know what, tomorrow will be here faster than you know.

I think that we get so focused on this one goal of being married, of being this person that our communities expect us to be, that we forget that you know what life is awesome. We have life! We can go out and do things that we enjoy. We can take this time to cultivate our own interests and deepen ourselves in a way that would never be possible other wise.

Buy flowers for Shabbat even if its just you. Walk instead of taking the bus and enjoy the rare days of sunshine that we get.

I'm so sick of every conversation I ever have with every tom dick and Harriet is about dating, and what am i looking for, and who should i meet and what I'm doing wrong. Or about how messed up dating is these days and how can we fix the crisis, how its a mans world , how we just cant win...I'm just done discussing it to dearth!

I want to live today! I want to just be and enjoy the blessings Gd has given me

Monday, March 17, 2014

Changing it up

So life has been a little crazy as if late. School is stress that just won't go away..it gives me precious little time to post. It's not like I don't have inspirational thoughts just don't have the time to flesh them out into full blown posts so for now..I'm gonna test something out...something I've held out on for a long time..I decided to switch it up and see if using twitter would work better.

So if you feel inclined you can follow me at @aminspiration1.

I'm still figuring the whole twitter thing out.. ( I know I sound so old)

Hope to see you there

Sunday, February 2, 2014

The Friendship Platform

So recently I read this book 
and it inspired me. 

I'm sure some of you have realized that I have been going through a bit of a rough patch recently. Some have even reached and and I greatly appreciate it that. 

A lot of my "sadness" for lack of better word stems from loneliness. A lack of friendship. Lack of relationship. Lack of connection. 

It is not good for man to be alone. Yes I am aware that this refers to ones marital state. No, I am not worried that I am not. Yes, I may be getting old, but that's a diff story. 

Moving on. 
In this book, the protagonist is a woman who find herself moving away from all her friends and loved ones to be with her husband. She finds herself for the first time in her life without a BFF. No one to call for a last minute mani-pedi, No one to gossip with or share her frustrations. She misses her old friends and tries to keep in touch but its just not the same. Anyone with a long-distance friend knows..you miss the birthdays, the sad days, the triumphs..you can share it via phone but its just not the same. 

anyways, so she decided that she is going to take matters into her own hands and decides that she will be going on 52 "girl dates" for a year. one a week in hopes of finding a new BFF. She goes through all kinds of means of finding a new friend. It really is fascinating.
 She starts a blog
  takes out an ad in the local paper
joins a cooking class
joins an improv class
hires a friend-broker
rent-a friend
speed-friend-dating..
among others

When i read this book, i was inspired yet frustrated at the same time. Being frum really limits your friend pool. I would love to join a cooking class, but where will i find a kosher one? 
take out an ad? talk about bad for shidduchim
speed-friend dating?  have you seen anything like this in the frum world?
someone suggested going to a shiur- but alas those usually occur at night and I'm in class :( 

so i was trying to brainstorm a way to do this. 
A way to find local friends to just hang out with. It doesn't necessarily have to be my new BFF, but just a circle of friends. People to spend shabbat with, people to hang out with Sat night or Sunday night. 

Yes, I know this sounds a little desperate. however, like the author of the book, feel like I'm probably not the only one. As we get older, and our friends join the marrieds ...or if you are like me and moved to NY later on and don't really yet have a circle of friends here..whatever it is I'm willing to bet that I am not the only one in this situation. You can tell me if you know otherwise. 

All that being said..i hereby am asking the blogger community at large for help. for ideas. 
what do you think i should do? What have you done in the past?
I am opening myself up. 
You wont know if you don't ask...
so I'm asking. 

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Ever feel...

Like your completely superfluous...
Like you  everything say is wrong
Every step wrong
Everything just WRONG

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

A Cleaner Tomorrow

I feel compelled to follow up the last uber depressing post with a more positive one.

Princess Lea just wrote about the importance of delayed gratification. Self Control. Words that seem so foreign to too many people these days. One of the reasons anorexics go to such extreme measures of dieting, is that they feel like they have lost all control of their lives and food, well that is one thing that is under their control. That sense of control, that degree of discipline is empowering. Being a dictator just yourself, is still power.

I have harnessed this power. No, I am not anorexic. My friend is getting married in March, and I am dieting and exercising. I have been complaining for too long that my coat doesnt fit without doing anything about it. Its invigorating. I am in control. Not my sweet tooth, not the late night munchies..I made a decision to eat healthy and well and I am sticking to it.

I am slowly, cleaning my apartment, really deep cleaning and its cathartic. I think that i may have missed my calling as a cleaning lady. There is something purifying about scrubbing till my arm hurts, till the wood gleams, the sink glistens, and the apartment smells lemony fresh.

Linens changed, laundry washed, towels folded and put away.

Its a sense of renewal. A sense of a clean start. A clean organized home hopefully means a organized and clean mind.

heres to the road of recovery and taking back control of my life...as much as i can anyways..because at the end of the day...its His world,were just visiting.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

tonight

so basically it comes down to this,

i dont have anyone to talk to..and i really need to get this out.

A family I am close to has a son you could call " at risk." I hate labels but just so you know what Im talking about. The parents..have no clue what they are doing and are making text-book classic WRONG moves. They seem to be intent on completely pushing the kid off. Issuing ultimatums. Telling him they wouldn't care if he died. Kicking him out of the house. Yelling. Screaming. The works.

The sisters reached out to me and i told them how important it is to love him, and be warm to him. To let him know that he is wanted and that they are there for him unconditionally. I mentioned in passing something you learn in Psyche 101- you can never force anyone to change..people will change when they want to. You can change yourself but that is about it.

Anywhose..the crazed dad called me yelling at me that i am in no position to tell his kids anything...especially such silly things like " you cant force people to change.."

I broke down in tears. It makes me tremble to think that there are kids, and i know he isn't the only one, kids whose parents are so clueless. Parents who undoubtedly love their children but have no idea how to reach out to them, how to negotiate with them. So many kids on the streets, so many kids feeling unwanted, unloved, un-cared for, just because the parents are too dumb to know better. Because the parents put unrealistic expectations on them. Because parents are ashamed at what people think. They are more concerned about what the butcher thinks than their relationship with their children.

I've been through some difficult things. A few people have told me they are concerned that i might be depressed. Truth be told, i might be. We all have our moments. Yes i have been crying more than usual. But if there is one thing that i have never doubted is that my parents love me no matter what and that their home is always open to me. I am so blessed to have such a loving family.

What saddens me the most is that this isn't true for every child. This isn't a given for every " at risk" teen. Sure i was never " at risk" but i definitely did things that my parents didn't agree with But i always knew that everything came from a place a love.

I am crying tonight for this boy, and his family. Please, if you have time, say a little tehilim, for all those lost boys and girls who have no where to turn and no where to go tonight.

May Hashem always watch over you and protect you.