family / myself


As is the custom at the end of a year and the beginning of a new one, I’ve been reflecting. Really, tonight is no different from any other night. Tomorrow, Abraham will wake me up around 7 or 7:30 if I’m lucky. I’ll make some breakfast for the kids. We’ll play, chat, read. I’ll say no, change diapers, and smile. Hopefully a lot.

But, why not take advantage of a free, structured reflection?

I don’t think I could characterize this year as a whole. I barely remember last winter. Or spring.

What I do remember is that this is the year that I finally feel like Reading is home. David and I have been married for 4 years, and being the virtuous, old fashioned folks we are, I didn’t move in until after our wedding. I was still commuting back to the Lehigh Valley for work and yoga (although that isn’t over, just diminished).  But now, I work fully in our area. If it weren’t for the hills, I could ride my bike everywhere I work (or if I weren’t such a wimpy bike-rider {I can’t call myself a cyclist, that’s how wimpy I am, although I do have toe-clips [thanks, Husband]}). I teach in the city, the suburbs, and our Temple. I write in the in-between times. And I am the Artistic Director of a Theater Company. (For more info, or if you want to share your hard-earned money with us).

But work alone, even theater, isn’t enough to make a place feel like home. That takes friends. I had my family; David is my dearest friend, but a husband-friend is different from a friend-friend. I have people I can call to stay with Abraham when my temperature drops in the night and I need to go to the emergency room (That was weird and scary, but it went away. Maybe it was a migraine?). I have people who will come over for lunch and talk theater while Abraham builds trains. I have people who walk in the house without knocking because they know they are always welcome. I have people.

It is hard to live in a city without family nearby. We have worked hard to create a network of people we love and trust, and I think we finally have that. And that is home. That is our family.

In 2006, before I went to Israel, a piece of song came to me. I’m not really sure how to describe it, but it just popped into my head: I go so I can return home. At the time, it was deeply meaningful for me related to my travel to Israel. I never had the intention of making Israel my home, but being there helped me find what was important to me, Jewishly and otherwise, and when I came back, I was better able to make my place my home.

Now, it carries a different meaning. I, for some strange reason, despite being a bit shy, have continually put myself in new places where I didn’t know anyone else (or very few people): summer camp, a new middle school in 8th grade, college, moving to Bethlehem, and most recently moving to Reading. I knew David, but otherwise I was starting from scratch. “I go” – I had become comfortable in Bethlehem, in my communities there, but I knew I needed a change, I needed to go. “So I can return home” – I knew this time would come, though I sometimes doubted it, and I am so grateful that it has.

2012 was the year of home. What was it for you?

One thought on “Reflections

  1. I was just thinking yesterday that I missed your blog posts! Thanks for sharing your new year reflection. You make W. Rdg feel more like home to me as well.

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