Counting the Omer and more

Pesach is behind us, mourning is with us now and Lag B’Omer is on the horizon, and so are Bar b que’s and hair cuts.  This year I cleaned my house for Passover and refrained from eating chametz for all of Passover.  Seven whole days of no bread, no crackers, pretzels, flour, pasta or rice.  I don’t know how I did it especially flying for 4 days the chol ha’moed, but I did and I survived.  Now we’re 24 days past Passover and in just a week it’ll be Lag B’Omer and we’ll be celebrating and bbq’ing up a storm and cutting ones hair and SHAVING. Oh I can’t wait to shave, 24 days of not shaving and I have a new respect for those hairy men, you know the ones who have a 5 o’clock shadow at noon. I’m so glad that I don’t grown facial hair in hours.  The first seven days were bearable but week 2 stunk, my face itched like crazy and was all red because I had been itching it, week 3 has been ok some itching here and there but it doesn’t look scraggly anymore and only a week left and I can’t wait to get rid of it. Now I know most “reform” Jews don’t follow the custom of not cutting one’s hair or not shaving but I wanted too this year to see if I found meaning it.  I have found meaning in and will probably do it again next year.  But I just hope next year it won’t itch so much.

I have also decided to leave my current living situation and be on my own. It’s a big move, not with belongings, but emotionally.  I’ve lived with my current roommate for a total of 8 years. We’ve both grown, we’ve been through hell and back.  Fights, hugs, crying, laughing, epidurals, severe back pain, boob jobs, quitting smoking, boyfriends, fiancées, a merger at work and almost a bankruptcy.  Some were from me and some were from her.  8 years is a long time, a lot of memories and stories.  It’s going to be hard and who knows what the future brings, all I know is in a month I’ll be living on my own for the first time in my life. 33 years is really long.  In 33 years I’ve never been on my own, I’ve always had someone living with me. From my parents and sister to 9 other roommates when I first started flying to now just one and soon none.  It’s scary and exciting at the same time.

Also since summer is almost here, that means I’ve been on my conversion journey well over a year.  Now I know it’s technically not that long but I’m talking about the class one takes while studying to convert.  Today I sent my autobiography to my family, the one I talked about in my last post.  I’ve received only good things back from them and I’m so thankful to Hashem that I have such an accepting and understanding family. As much as I don’t speak to my immediate family (mom, sister, stepdad)  when I send them something important they are supportive.  My aunts and cousins are and have always been amazing especially since my relationship with my immediate family is no longer. And of course my friends are my chosen family and are there for me always. I also set up an appointment to have the conversation with my rabbi to make sure he and I are on the same page and to make sure he thinks I’m ready.  For some reason that was harder than letting my family read my auto biography, which it shouldn’t have been.  With my work schedule, and the ending of the semester for class study, tonight was essentially my last class. But a new issue arose when I spoke with my rabbi tonight,  next week the community mikvah closes while it gets rebuilt and renamed and so far there isn’t a replacement available from the orthodox community for the non-orthdox community to use.  So I need to either have to hope an orthodox mikvah is made  available or I have to wait until September for the new one to be finished.  It’s a tough decision and one I hope Hashem will help with.

I know I kept my Hebrew names from you in my last post, so without further ado, they are Eitan Menachem.

It’s almost time

A few days ago I met with my rabbi and had the chat to get the ball rolling on finishing my conversion.  Well the ball feels like a fast ball pitch, the meeting was on Friday, today it’s Tuesday and my Hatafat dam Brit was done today and my Beit Din and Mikvah are tomorrow.  I can’t believe how quickly it’s gone and how emotional I’ve been today.  The “circumscision” didn’t hurt that badly, and there was hardly any blood. The mohel had to circle the drop on the gauze so my rabbi could see it.  He also gave the gauze to my rabbi and he was a little freaked out he then gave it to me when we left the dr.’s office.  After that it was off to the nail salon for a pedicure and wine because your nails are supposed to be cleaned and trimmed for mikvah. It was also a time to just relax and be pampered that massage chair did wonders. When I got home it’s really when my emotions kicked into overdrive when I was watching the final 2 episodes of Revenge, it’s been the only show recently, that I’ve watched every Sunday for the past 4 years.  The tears started in first scene of the series finale, I got that ugly cry too the one where you just can’t stop it, no matter what and you just look like a blubbering mess.  Thank G-d I was alone at home so no one got it on video. Hopefully tomorrow I can keep it together for the Beit Din, but if not oh well. 

I don’t know what to expect tomorrow at the Beit Din, but if it’s been like everything else in this process it will be easy, because this is what Hashem wants.