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Isn't it pretty?

Sunday, September 23, 2007

New Year's Thoughts

Both Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur have flown by, and Sukkot is shortly on its way. I had a very nice Rosh Hashanah spent with a very special, warm and accepting family that I feel fortunate to have met. But while my tummy was certainly happy (or over-happy) about Rosh Hashanah, my soul has been left quite lacking these days.

This past year was a really tough one for me. I've been constantly overwhelmed by all the responsibilities I have to juggle, sometimes not really being capable of handling them all. And I'm facing one more year of the same. I wish I could say that in these difficult times, my faith has been strengthened and I have learned to lean on God more than ever. But I can't. If anything, all my struggles have made it more difficult to keep praying and praying and not feel like I'm receiving answers.

So, for this reason, because I have been unable to turn my difficulties into strengths and because I don't think I can honestly say that I have learned from or grown from my challenges this year, my Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur were admittedly less than an uplifting spiritual experience. And that makes me sad, but it is what it is.

What's the point of this post? In part, just to post something, because I haven't in a long time. Also, to state that this might very well be the last post of this blog - I've run out of things to say, don't really have the mind for it anymore and think it might just be time to retire anyway. My Ramblings blog will probably continue to have my little bursts of un-thought-out thoughts, but this one will probably become pretty dormant as I struggle to just get through this last year of grad school.

I do wish everyone a healthy and happy year ahead.


  • Go listen to Rabbi Frand's lecture on Natan's blog. It may help you a bit with your tefilah obstacles. And it's not just you. Good luck!

    By Blogger SaraK, at 9/23/07, 3:46 PM  

  • I can completely understand your feeling underwhelmed and not having had a good tefilah experience. I was actually planning on making a post about that soon... how easy it is to feel... not "disenchanted" per se, but not really enchanted either.

    But if there's one thing I do know, it's that I'd be really sad if this were your last post. =(

    By Blogger LT, at 9/23/07, 5:13 PM  

  • Shoshana, just wanted to say that I feel exactly the same way... When looking for the bright spot in my overwhelming life, I thought, "Well if nothing else, at least this will make me really turn to G-d!" But so far no such luck... my davening is at least as unfocused as ever... I feel like my soul slept through the Yomim Nora-im.

    What are we going to do about this?

    By Blogger Bas~Melech, at 9/24/07, 12:31 AM  

  • I think it's more common to have trouble davening when everything is a bit overwhelming; [raises hand] though on the other hand, it also helped me personally in [very] short bursts. I dunno - 'twas rough this year.

    As you well know, I'm with LT. May your difficulties turn into strengths this year; I think you generally are pretty good at that, anyway. :)

    By Blogger Ezzie, at 9/24/07, 1:39 AM  

  • It's hard to understand, but the chatter here in the j-blogosphere (and also among most of my friends) makes it seem like almost everyone's had an uninspiring Yom Kippur.

    Maybe that's okay. Maybe the fact that some years will be "down years" helps us appreciate that you can't manufacture inspiration or spiritual energy. But you've always struck me as a glass-is-half-full type, Shoshana, and maybe you can generate enough of your own positive energy over the next year.

    PS - Made that post I was talking about; would love to hear your thoughts.

    By Blogger LT, at 9/24/07, 12:00 PM  

  • Could someone post the link to the aforementioned Rabbi Frand shiur?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9/24/07, 11:09 PM  

  • Anon - Here ya go.

    By Blogger Shoshana, at 9/24/07, 11:16 PM  

  • i read somewhere that no prayers go unanswered. Hashem just stores away our tefilos for the right time.

    i'm sorry you feel as you do - it happens to all of us. it's a part of the jewish/human condition.

    keep your chin up!

    By Blogger Maven, at 9/25/07, 1:48 PM  

  • As someone who has struggled through the incredibly demanding and un-fun world of grad school, I completely understand your need to prioritize. But, as someone who regularly reads and enjoys your blog, I hope that this will be but a brief respite.
    Your words do have an impact and clearly you have the power to tap into emotions.. one need only look at the number of comments you receive to know that. So, take a break, relax, but never forget.

    By Anonymous Rebecca, at 9/25/07, 4:05 PM  

  • My YK was uninspiring as well. It's kinda creepy that so many people feel the same this year!

    By Blogger e-kvetcher, at 9/26/07, 2:48 PM  

  • This was for me the first year ever that I had a good Yom Kippur - but then everything fell apart for me immediately afterwards. So, it was perhaps my own pride that caused me to fall down this past month, but I'm very saddened about having missed the joy of Sukkos.

    I do hope that your year is better than mine has been thus far. You have earned it simply by struggling. From strength to strength...

    By Blogger redsneakz, at 10/11/07, 9:21 AM  

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