Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Simple Pleasures

The morning sun
A new day, a new beginning
A good nights sleep
The most adorable children
A tasty breakfast
Fresh, clean clothing to wear
The cutest clothes for my little girl
Ears-I can hear my kids converse
They talk to each other like little adults
Energy-I need so much energy to take care of them
And I have it...usually (!!)
We made the school bus...again

Thank you...Hashem.

I can see
I can drive
I can think
I can park
And I do.
I find parking! :)

Thank you...Hashem.

My head works well
I can figure out solutions
Help other people
While I work
Things work out
My work day ends
Time for part two
I make it home in time
In time for my kids and their bus

Thank you...Hashem.

The kids have so much energy
They have so much to say
About their day
Supper-it works
The kids eat their food
Not all of it
But they eat

Thank you...Hashem

They take their baths nicely
Even spill some water out of the tub
But that's all part of the fun
The fun of having little kids
Little kids to take care of
To love
To hug
To kiss
To sing to
To get annoyed with :)
And to discipline
Wrap them in towels
Wrap them in hugs
They get into pajamas nicely
Play a little bit
And then it's bedtime
We say Shema, sing some songs
Give lots of kisses, and sing some more
Close the door...
The kids drift off
What a night!
But it's worth it...
Because I have them
And wouldn't trade them
For anything
Anything in the world
The house is quiet...eventually
Time for my night
To begin
I begin to write...
Instead of doing
I take some time
To think
To thank
To think about
And to thank
For the simple pleasures
For the little things
He has given me
I blessed

Thank you...Hashem.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

A Different Connection

There is something I once heard about our relationship with Hashem that I would like to share with you.

Sometimes, when going through the tests that come along with real life, we start to question and challenge things that may have been part of the foundations of our emunah. It's not such a great know that we have these doubts. And it makes us feel distant when we have the big WHY in our head.

Why is this happening?
Hashem...why are you doing this to me? This is too hard.

A person can start to feel like they are disconnected from Hashem. Like asking and questioning is sure proof of how far they have gone.

What happened to the good Bais Yaakov girl they once were? What happened to the idealism? What happened to the hashkafos that were so ingrained in them?

They used to accept everything they heard at any speech, class or lecture without challenging any of it. They used to drink in spirituality whenever they read or heard anything inspiring.

Suddenly, it's not so easy anymore. Suddenly, they aren't so sure that things are the way people say they are. Who says anything is so true? How does anyone really know the reasons and the answers? 
So they begin to ask...why questions, questions of uncertainty, questions that search for clarity. Sometimes they verbalize them-when there is someone to ask, and other times they keep them inside, because those questions seem like...too much. But they are there-the skepticism, the doubts, the confusion. 

Is this all a clear sign of how far they strayed from Him? 

In truth, all of this shows just how deeply they were hurt by, but at the same time connected to, Hashem. Those questions come from a burning desire for closeness, understanding and clarity. They ask because really, what they want is an end to the difficulties...for things to be somewhat easier...and they want to understand, they want to be close, even while going through such strong and difficult tests.

Many of us think of a relationship with Hashem in positive terms, like noticing Hashem in the good things, appreciating Him and asking Him for things when we need. But there's a different connection, a bond just as real and as close, in the complaining and asking why.

Why is that so?

When a person turns TO Hashem when they're upset...or just plain frustrated...and they don't turn away from Him, it shows they still have that kesher. They KNOW the difficulties they are experiencing are from Him and they're annoyed at Him, almost as if they're saying, How could you do this to me? How could you pile this on-on top of everything else I'm dealing with?? Since the person continues to acknowledge and talk to Him, with the awareness that it all comes from Hashem, it shows that they are still so very close.

This can be compared to someone who comes to their father/mother when they are fuming mad at him/her for doing something to them-knowing that it came directly from their parent. The child does not cut off ties with them because of what was done, no matter how upset he is. The child is still talking to their father or mother. The two of them still have that connection...and it's a very strong one. This bond is so powerful and it will keep them close even when they are angry or hurt.

When a person reaches inside themselves when they are experiencing real challenges, when they start to question everything they hear, they may feel distant. But really, this is an expression of the pain they're in, of the depth of the soul connection they have with the One Above, albeit not a connection one would use to describe closeness. But honestly, it IS a connection of closeness, of yearning, of desire...and yes, of love. Love amidst anger and pain but love nonetheless.

There are different stages of our relationship with Hashem. Sometimes it is positive and easy and other times it is tough-but one must remember that at all points, that connection is never severed. The bond is there, always.

May you be able to always feel close to matter what kind of connection you have.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013


Have you ever sat in bumper to bumper traffic on a highway, watching the cars on the other side breeze past you? They're all driving so fast while you're stuck waiting for the car ahead of you to move up a bit...

You wish you were on the other side too, moving quickly like all those lucky cars. But you know that there is no use in wishing, no point in being jealous. Because if you'd be on the other side, you wouldn't reach your destination. You just took a big trip and you want to get back home. For you, that is the wrong side of the highway; taking it would bring you right back where you came from. And that's not exactly where you want to go.


Life has been compared to many different thing by many bright and intellectual people.

This time, I'm using the comparison of the highway of life.

Sometimes in life, you wish you could take the easier, faster route. You wish it wouldn't take so long for the changes you want to just...happen.

You're waiting, hoping (and hopefully praying) for your yeshuah to come.

But you feel like you are sitting in traffic...and nothing is moving, nothing is changing.

You don't see any progress.

From time to time, the car ahead of you moves, just a few inches or maybe a few feet.

But then you're stuck again...stuck in the traffic on your highway of life.

You look to the other side of the road and you see so many cars, zooming by...and you eye them with a twinge of jealousy. You wish you could also go for a smooth, quick ride and arrive at your destination. But you know, deep down, that if you were to travel on the other side of the road, you would not reach the place you hope for.

But...that doesn't stop you from looking at those cars, those people, with a wishful eye, a feeling of yearning in your heart.

Eventually, there will be a point where the traffic will clear. You will make it through this challenge, as long as you keep driving, as long as you keep moving...and as long as you never give up hope.

You will get to where you want to. You will reach your destination. Keep your eyes on the goal, even as you continue to be human and glance at the other side of the highway from time to time.

Keep hoping for that clear path, when the obstacles that have been in your way are removed and you could zoom forward...and achieve that which you have been waiting for. Lift your eyes to the heavens and daven. Daven to Hashem to help you make it through your traffic jam intact, and become a better person, a stronger person.

May you be able to go through the highway of your life with the right attitude, knowing that no matter what kind of traffic jam you are stuck in, Hashem will clear the road for you one day...and you will get what you have been waiting for!

Sunday, May 5, 2013


I'm playing Badminton with my son on shabbos afternoon. The birdie goes flying and I can't find it.

"Where is it?" I ask my son.

"Right over there," he says, pointing to a spot right near me. I just had to turn my head to look and there it was.

I never even bothered looking, I think to myself.

I am suddenly struck with a powerful thought.

How many times in our lives do we ask, "Hashem...where are you?" without even bothering to look for Him?

How many times, when things are confusing and unclear, do we wonder where Hashem is hiding...when we haven't even made any effort to search for Him?

Is it that hard to find Hashem?

Look out for your eyes...and you will find Him.

It is not so hard.

He is here. He is right here. All you have to do is look for Him.