These last few days, I've been running on empty.
Thursday, I slept late, but not enough. As the morning progressed, I realized that if I took a nap, I would not wake up in time to pick up my kids from school. I forced myself to stay awake.
Then, I dragged myself to pick up my kids. I arrived on time, which was really good, 'cause the weather was awful! (cold and rainy, and windy too)
As usual, teaching swimming invigorated me. For an hour and a half, I felt great. I wasn't the only one. MD was full of energy and continued swimming laps, even after his class was over!
After swimming, I realized we were going to be at least two hours late to a family wedding. Moshe called his mom, who told him the chupah (marriage ceremony) hadn't even begun. So, I shifted back into high gear, and off we went. (you can read all about the wedding here)
Friday morning, I had a hishtalmut (enrichment session) for Migdal David (The Tower of David Museum) tour guides. We were to meet at the Tayelet (The Haas Promenade, overlooking the Old City), and end near the Kotel (Western Wall). It was a bus tour, so I figured I could do it even if I was tired.
I didn't want to leave my car at the Tayelet for the duration of the tour. My car is identifiably Jewish and "nationalist" (note the orange ribbon hanging from my rear-view mirror, and my bumper stickers). It's like a giant sign inviting Arab teens to come and vandalize my car. (Been there, done that). Moshe agreed to drop me off after he took the kids to school.
When I woke up, I didn't check the clock. The kids were home, and Moshe was working at his computer, so it felt early. As I pitter-pattered around, I suddenly noticed the time: 8:00. School was starting...NOW!
I rushed to get ready, pausing only to find a flashlight for the tour. (Finding a working flashlight, with working batteries, is no small feat! MD & A joined the search as I was about to give up. A remembered that she had a small flashlight and MD helped her find it.)
Moshe had to drop me off before he brought the kids to school. The kids would be even later, but there was no choice. The Migdal David hishtalmuyot start on time, and I didn't want to miss the bus. I had to be at the Tayelet by 8:30.
We left the house at 8:15, and Moshe dropped me off at 8:23 - 7 minutes early.
As Moshe drove away, I scanned the small cluster of people there and realized that they were not my group. There was one other person walking around; he also wasn't part of my group.
I wasn't that early. I couldn't be the only one there. Unless....
I called RA, from Migdal David. She was home. The hishtalmut was cancelled, due to inclement weather.
I looked up at the bright sky, and felt the crisp air on my cheeks. The weather was perfect.
Three days ago, the forecast predicted pouring rain. Somehow, I missed the email informing us that the hishtalmut was postponed. (I checked, the email was in my inbox since Tuesday)
I could have been sleeping!!
I hadn't brought a book, and the crisp air would begin to feel cold if I didn't start moving. My friend, NA, lives very close to the Tayelet. I called my husband, then walked to her house. My eldest daughter, Y, was at NA's daughter's b-day party sleepover. Moshe could pick us up at the same time.
It was great to see NA, even for a brief visit. To our chagrin, before we could even drink a cup of coffee, Moshe returned. Y was still in pyjamas, like all the other girls, so we left her there, to be picked up later.
On our way home, Moshe needed to stop at the post office. I wasn't eager to stand on line and I didn't want to wait in the car (remember, no book). Moshe thought the post office would take a few minutes, but I've waited on line a lot longer (sometimes up to half an hour). It was too late to go back to NA's, so I decided to visit, IS, who lives near the post office.
I was eager to share (read: vent) my morning's frustrations. As I entered IS's building, I thought of something Yehudit Kotler suggested at her Rosh Hodesh laughter workshop: changing feelings of frustration to laughter, by laughing at adversity. The laughter releases endorphins, and we feel better. (for more information about laughter and endorphins, click here)
So, I laughed. OK, I chuckled. It was kind of lame, actually. So I tried again. Still, only a chuckle. But the reframing had already taken place.
When I described my morning's mishaps, it was with a spirit of laughter (and just a touch of irony).
In the end, Moshe was right; the post office did not take long. As I finished my tale, Moshe called to tell me he was waiting downstairs.
Walking to meet Moshe, my steps were light, I felt free.
Maybe I'd get my morning nap after all.
Please daven (or send happy, healing thoughts) for RivkA bat Teirtzel.
With love and optimism,
Rav Chaim Kanievsky on the hetter mechira
2 hours ago