Tuesday, September 21, 2010

To My Big Boy

You are about to leave home. About to start a life of your own.

I've waited for this since the day you were born.

My heart is so full, that it aches. I am so unbelievably happy. Yet...there is a twinge of sadness.

I'm not unhappy about where you are going. I wouldn't want it any other way. You are going to where you are supposed to be, together with your future wife. To the life you are building together. But I will no longer be a part of the many moments of your life.

It's not like you ever really leave. A child is always in his mother's heart and mind.

But you will be missed.

I remember holding you...my first child....in your first moments of life.

Where have the years flown?

Where has the little boy gone?

Has the time really come?

Yom Kippur just passed. I davened for each of my children. I davened for all their personal needs. I worried about what is ordained for the coming year.

But my thoughts were especially with you.

I thought about everything that happened since last Yom Kippur. I thought about the monumental change in your life. And I davened for you and your kallah. For your new home. And for the children who will hopefully fill it.

I thank Hashem for allowing me to raise you and care for you, and for giving me such joy in watching you grow up to be the special person you are today.

My heart is full.

I wish for you so many things....so many blessings...so much good.

I wish for you only goodness. Only the very best of everything.

And I wish you and your wonderful, sweet kallah...your future wife...a life of true happiness. A life in which you will see the fulfillment of all your heart's desires.

Mazel tov to my dear, dear son.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Global Positioning

"Merge onto US 9 South," my GPS-lady intoned.

"No," I said. "I'm not doing that. That doesn't make any sense."

I forced my car towards the Garden State Parkway, despite her cries of "Recalculating". She really wanted me to take the 9, but I knew better. I knew that she had it wrong this time.

My daughter looked worried.

I cruised along, ignoring every attempt by my GPS to get me off the Parkway and back onto the 9. I closed my ears to that horrible word.

"Can you believe her?" I asked my daughter. "Can you believe how stubborn she is? I'm already on the Garden State. Why can't she just give in and let me stay here? Why does she keep trying to get me off of here and back on the 9? Where are her brains??"

"She doesn't have any," my daughter calmly reminded me. "No brains. Only voice."

I thought of the story I'd read about some driver who blindly followed the computerized voice, and crashed into a river or something. I will not be one of those motorists who turn their brains off when they turn their GPS systems on. It's not that I can't follow the GPS. I'm just positive I know a better route.

"In .5 miles, exit on the right…"

I was momentarily confused. I looked around, dazed. Was this the exit I needed to take to get the Outerbridge Crossing? I was no longer quite as sure as I'd been before. And I had 30 seconds to figure it out.

I took the exit.

And I found myself on Route 9. She beat me this time. My sense of direction, never very strong, left me completely. I sat back and let her lead me. I let go. The trip took double the time it should have, but I made it home.

I may not always like where she takes me, but when I'm hopelessly lost, she brings me back home.

There is a peculiar serenity in that knowledge. I don't necessarily appreciate her advice, and I don't always listen, but there is a sense of trust. No matter how frustrated I am...no matter how annoyed...there remains that faith in her.

Perhaps, some day, my GPS-lady and I will learn to work together. Maybe we can just start this relationship over.

We are approaching Rosh Hashanah. Reflecting on the past year, I find that I've made plenty of bad decisions. I've traveled roads that led to nowhere, and exited roads that were to lead to my destination.

And sometimes, I've been hopelessly lost.

But I know, if I listen to His voice, He will always lead me back home.

My life is in Hashem's hands. I may not always like what He does. But I like the feeling that He's running the show. I like letting go.

This year, I think I'll make a greater effort to stay on course. I will trust Him.

Maybe we can just start this relationship over.

To my readers and fellow bloggers:

May Hashem grant you all a year full of bracha and hatzlacha, mazal, good health, only simchos, and everything you ask for in your tefillos.

To all of you searching for your soulmates, may you find each other SOON. (This is my blog. I can say whatever I want. Iy"h by all of you! :P)

Kesiva V'chasima Tova.