4. Back in Jerusalem
My husband and I just arrived in Jerusalem after 9 days in NYC. The transition has been incredible (difficult and hilarious as well!), and there are many stories that I wanted to share with you, but alas, a lack of internet connection has kept me from doing so. I am currently on the computer at my in-law’s house. I miss posting, sharing, and hearing your ‘voices’. I will do my best to get some time with my laptop in a cafe tomorrow!
So while I have been “disconnected” from this world, I have been very connected otherwise. Jerusalem is incredible. For those of you that have been here before or are here now, I don’t need to elabourate, and for those that haven’t, no words can adequately describe the intensity and love that resides in this place. I have had many homes in my life, and the feeling of “home” was always related to the people that lived in the house (aka family). Until I came here, I never understood how one could feel at home in a land.
Someone mentioned that I should write a post on how I went from opening up to possibilities (“you didn’t grow up religious?!”) to arriving where I am now. I want to do this, but haven’t found the words yet. Hopefully this summer. I want to let you know now, however, that Jerusalem has played a huge part in my journey.
I know that crying is something I should avoid in order to stay connected on Shabbat, however, when I went to do Kabbalat Shabbat in Jerusalem two days ago, I couldn’t help but crying. A lot. These were tears of joy. These were tears of a disconnected soul being reconnected once again.
I have always said, that one can never really understand how disconnected they are until they feel reconnection. I have had a wonderful year in Chicago, and I am so grateful for everything the people and the place has given me. However, I only now realize that I haven’t truly breathed for a whole nine months. Coming back to Jerusalem is like being born again. For better and for worse, the smells are more intense, the tastes, the people, the emotions. Religion, politics, survival. Hate and love. It is much more difficult to live a sleeping life here. Which is a good thing. As soon as I disconnect, something slaps me across the face and reminds me why I am here. And I love it. I love it so much.
My brother is here for the next couple of weeks, which is a miracle in itself. I have really deepened my relationship with my mother in law (and the whole family) which I am so grateful for. Some of my closest friends from overseas are here studying and I am so inspired by them. And seeing my wonderful, beautiful mentors and friends has been… well, I feel like I never left. I have only been here for a few days, and can’t wait for what tomorrow brings.
I wish so much that all of you could be here with me. The physical distance between all of us pains me (yes, even those of you that I haven’t met in person)… but I know that one day it will happen and we will all be together.
I am hoping to get my internet issues resolved soon. I am sorry that there are no pictures in this post, but hopefully I have given you something beautiful regardless. Please be in touch and hopefully over the summer I will be able to give to you some of what Jerusalem has given to me.
Kol tuv (all the goodness in the world).