Thursday, April 27, 2006

Back To The Future IV -return of the yetzer tov

It's been a long time
Oh, such a long time
But why am I gone
Oh, why have I gone

Where did she go
That good, good girl
The one who grew
And advanced on the path
Where did she go

Many years past
She kept on growing
But she has since
Lost that feeling

Of living and growing
And loving that, knowing
She was walking the path
Ever walking farther on that

But now...
So silent, so still
So stagnant, what will
She become

So let's go back
In time again
To the years past
When life was lived fast

And in small, tiny steps
She'll look forward
No longer back
And she will walk

Forward and farther
Hither and yonder
Higher and higher
She will walk

Ever so slowly
Like counting golden coins
So they last
She will walk

Ever so gently
Ever so beautifully
Ever so hopefully
I will walk

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Rejection and Rejoicing

Ok, so I promised to mention the not such good news, which I worded as such since it is so not "bad news" since bad news is indicative of tragedy and this does not fit itself in that category. Thank G-d. Anyway, by now I think all law school applicants received their acceptance/rejection letters, and so did I. I did not get in to most of the schools I wanted to. So, sorry to tell y'all, but this semi-blonde is not going to Harvard. That's quite alright with me, though, since I did get into a school that was my first-and-a-half choice, meaning it wasn't my first or second choice but somewhere in between. It's very easy to see now that it will also be the best choice for me, personally. I hope it works out to be the best!

When I found out, I was a little disappointed, but to be brutally honest, it only hurt my pride -not my hopes. I'm ashamed to say that I'm used to success much more than failure, and it was a little bit of a sting that certain, unnamed schools didn't see just how spectacularly amazing I am. Oh, well, enough about my ego. The reason why it was only a little disappointing was because throughout my life, whenever I thought my life would go in one direction, it went in the complete opposite. Examples would have to be general, to maintain my anonymity and my vague aura of mystery! I thought I'd go to seminary for one year and be done. Nope. I thought I'd go to a prestigious, ivy league college. Definitely not. I thought I'd never have a boyfriend, or any boy type relationships until I start formally dating, and then I'd marry the third or fourth guy I date. Uh, nope. (more on that another time)

Really there's nothing left to say 'bout that except: "Rabos Machshavos B'Lev Ish, V'Atzas HaShem He Sakum"! Or, in more colloquial terms, "Man Plans, G-d Laughs."

Life is an everchanging adventure. I just hope that I can also laugh about whatever comes next!

Btw- chag sameach everyone!! Moed tov!!! (I heard typing was ok, just don't print!)

Monday, April 03, 2006

The Shrug and the Silence

Recently I read an article discussing the origin and usage of the phrase "It is what it is." A fascinating piece on modern vernacular, it really stuck with me. And whenever anyone uttered those words (or their close relatives, she is what she is, I am what I am, what will be will be) near me, I perked up and took notice. I noticed the strange and often sad acceptance of those words. "It is what it is" is usually sighed in a shrugging, I-guess-there's-nothing-we-can-do-about-it-so-we'll-live-with-it kind of way.

This kind of attitude is superficially admirable -a "good" attitude, accepting what cannot be changed, not pursuing futile endeavors of improvement. But as a Jew, we should never be shruggingly accepting. We really should be in a constant state of hishtadlus-growth, effort, change. Nothing is futile. The scenario itself may not alter or disappear with a few prakim of tehillim or with a prayer, but we will. So it is never what it is. It could be so much more.

In next week's parsha, Aharon hears from Moshe that his sons were killed by the strange fire they brought in the mishkan. What was his response? Silence. Not shrugging meek, resignation, but rather silence, stillness, understanding and intelligent acceptance. (Very often silence would be the most intelligent response to any scenario.)

So do not just accept the ups and downs in your life. Take them, use them, try to change them, grow from them. Apathy is one of the worst emotions -worse than hatred, anger, sadness, frustration...Apathy and despair are two halves of the same coin. So learn from this week's parsha, tzav, and maintain the aish tamid in your heart. Keep the fire burning, keep on trying, keep on working to make a difference. One tiny spark can start a conflagration.

"It is what it is." Or is it?