lundi, octobre 24, 2005

last year shemini atzeret/simchat torah

Last year was the first year in about a string of 8 or more years that I wasn't at Ol'Nass' for the Jewish holiday of Shemini Azteret/Simchat Torah... in retrospect I think it was for a good reason... that was the last chag I got to spend with my friend Yehuda z"l. He had suggested that one of our meals be a hot dog meal. ;) I miss Yehuda. I think perhaps this shabbat I will have a hot dog dinner at home just to remember him in my own way.

I am glad that I was here instead last year. We had a lot of fun and it was really an amusing chag (chag being the Hebrew word for the pilgrimage holy days). It was a fluke that I was here, but in retrospect it was so much fun to have that time with him. I remember him dancing to make up for Matan not being here. I remember him offering to be my wedding planner... and my laughing as I asked if everything was going to end up being in black leather if I took him up on his offer.

Now that I'm back at Ol'Nass' for shemini atzeret and simchat torah. It is as if my life has resumed. Perhaps, it is that I feel as if the cycle has come around full circle.

I remember Yehuda making fun of a very spooky way of saying the words in Rosh Hashana/YK davening/prayers that talk about who will die by fire, who will die by water, who will die by hunger, who will die in various manners... my chavruta reminded me of this and I can't help but think of the disasters this past year has contained for all of mankind.

I am so aware now of the power a year of mourning has... no wonder a year was instituted by our rabbis for mourning. Over the course of the first year, we are called by all sorts of things to think of all the things that have gone on. I think somehow a lot of the events this past year went by in a blur. Though I thought of him, the blue hair and the yetziat mitzrayim shtick... I hardly remember Purim at all. I think I barely did more than simply hear the megilla, but I know I sent shalach manot, and had a seudah... I just don't recall the details like I would have in normal years. At Pesach, I wrapped up the book and took it to his family. Telling myself when it would hurt less that I would return to finish writing in it, but that at least his family would have it for comfort during Pesach, which was a chag they missed Yehuda a lot when he was in Israel, and now will have to miss him forevermore. The long summer days came and went, I'd have imagined him working in a lab downtown, but thoughts of him came less frequently and less painfully. With Elul and the return of Rosh Hashana, Yom Kippur, and Sukkot, my thoughts again turned towards him and my memories. In the end, though, my awareness has returned to me. I am returning somehow to the world in a way that isn't steeped with the flavors, colors, and songs that make up my memories of a life wherein Yehuda made things brighter. I still think of him, but somehow the edge of it is lesser and my acceptance of the world that keeps turning and moving withut Yehuda is more solid.

Somehow coming full circle in the year has made a huge difference, but the year mattered greatly to me. The passing of a full year of all the memories that are attendant upon that year, its holidays, and its memories was important for healing and growth. I'm not terribly sure why. Somehow though I am saddened still, I am not without joy and hope for the future. I want to remember and to live.

A part of me wonders if I am doing him an injustice and part of me is reassured that I am doing what I should be doing.