What Was Lost & What Was Found – Part 2

13151719_10209643599265448_7551991565547268465_nSome journeys take you forward along the path of life, while others take you back, helping to form a different and better version of yourself, now somehow forever changed. The three days in Atlanta, whether reading my poem or just spending time with my mom and cousin Linda, did both: moving me forward, while at the same time circling me back upon myself. The experience helped blunt the edges of some painful memories, overlaying them with better ones. Continue reading

What Was Lost & What Was Found – Part 1

Rachel Child PhotoDeath was no stranger to me in childhood. It’s a simple truth, yet so much more lurks behind it. Attending my Great-Aunt Francie’s funeral is one of my earliest memories, and I’m pretty sure I went to about a funeral a year through high school, with Grandpa Phil dying my sophomore year and Grandma Esther my junior. By the time I met Doug, in the summer before senior year, I had no living grandparents. I dreaded funerals and took no comfort in the Mourner’s Kaddish, which I’d learned by heart when I was far, far too young. Continue reading

I’m Far from an Über Jew (Part 1)

Becky Mandela Coloring1Wow! Tuesdays’s post (See “In Case You Didn’t Know: I’m Jewish“) led to some interesting and thought-provoking conversations, via email, text, Facebook DM, and in person. My mind is still processing it all. I didn’t realize when I was writing it what an incredibly personal thing it would turn out to be and hitting “Publish” was hard. After all, with a nod to Billy Joel, I only reveal what I want you to see, and this blog is the most personal public place I have. Typically, only a handful of people read it, but sometimes it goes places and distances I never imagined. So, I took a deep breath, hit “publish” and then left. I took the dog and went on a walk and didn’t know what reactions I’d find upon my return.

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In Case You Didn’t Know: I’m Jewish

Bimah photoI’m Jewish. That shouldn’t come as any big surprise to anybody that knows me, or reads my blog. But sometimes I just feel the need to say it–to make sure that there are no misunderstandings on either side of the aisle. After all, my last name is Scottish and so you might be fooled.

It’s my husband’s family that carries the Scottish heritage, but I’ve embraced it, having always been a fan of the country. Now that I’ve been there multiple times, it’s actually become one of my favorite places on earth. So there’s haggis – my Scottish side, and challa – my Jewish side. (Challa is actually a nod to “Rachallah” – my Yiddish name used by my father as a term of endearment my entire life, and later adopted by my husband. It is not the bread.)

Back to the fact that I’m Jewish. Continue reading