Friday, July 30, 2010

What Matters Most?

Today's blog post does not focus specifically on life as a parent but instead on what I have gained as a parent and the profound lessons, understanding and appreciation for the love established since the birth of Sarah.

Therefore, when a colleague of mine from work told me she was going to Israel for a trip, a journey I have on my Bucket List to take in the future, I was in awe and inspired. I have often wished to make such a trip but have never made the time or gotten around to doing it making a hundred and one excuses.

When she offered to me, during her trip, to include a piece of paper from me filled with words of prayer and requests to be placed inside the cracks of the Wailing Wall I was touched and appreciative.

For those of you who may not know, (and let truth be told, I did not really know either -- I suck at history) that The Western Wall, which is also sometimes referred to as the Wailing Wall, is remains of the great Jewish temple, which stood for nearly 500 years. Herod the Great began rebuilding and adding on to the temple around 19 B.C.E.. The temple was not complete until fifty years later. After completion in circa 70 C.E. the temple was, only a few years later, destroyed by the Romans.

Why is this important?

The Wailing Wall, for Jewish people all over the world, and for others as well, has become a most sacred place as the temple itself was thought to be the place where G-d resides on earth. A tradition of placing prayers or requests written on small pieces of paper placed in cracks in the Wall dates back hundreds of years.

Therefore, when hearing of my colleague's pending trip and the opportunity to share some of my prayers and requests to be added to the wall, I was moved by the idea, and completely on board. Outside of the many trees I have had planted in Israel in honor and memory of loved ones over the years this was my next opportunity to find some kind of personal connection to Israel.

When it came time to put pen to paper (really, fingers to keyboard) I decided to write in the form of Haiku, a Japanese type of poetry that my husband and I bonded over early on in our relationship. This creative writing approach continues to be a past time that still remains a strong component of our lives. We believe there is a Haiku for everything.

While writing (typing) these meaningful and special words on a piece of paper I was reminded of how profound my life is not only because it's my life but because my husband and daughter are a significant part of it. I wish for my daughter, especially, many wonderful experiences, and pray daily for her health and safety.

With life being so busy it's sometimes easy to lose sight of what is important.

This opportunity with the Wailing Wall also reminded me of something my mom said to me many years ago while I was preparing to blow out the candles on my 25th birthday cake, which happened to be the same year my father was diagnosed with cancer. She said, "Wish for health and happiness." At the time, I thought of years past when I wished for a new leather jacket, a boyfriend, to make the cheerleading squad, etc. I was then brought back to the words my mother just uttered and it was then that I finally learned and understood what she had been trying to teach me all these years. It was like an epiphany.

For all the candles I have blown out since my 25th birthday, there have only been wishes made for health and happiness. Nothing in life matters most or has meaning without health and happiness.

Therefore, I wish you health and happiness and a long life with many amazing memories with your families in between.

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