Welcome to my 'We're moving to Beit Shemesh, OH MY GOSH we're making Aliyah' blog! I have joked recently that 'everyone has a blog' and now laugh at the irony that I too, have jumped on the band wagon. We head out to NYC and then Beit Shemesh on July 6th and July 11th, respectively. G-D bless Nefesh B'Nefesh for holding our hands through the process!
My Chicago home has become a box graveyard. Breakables, documents, "chatchkies," EVERYTHING is in a box- or will be. It's daunting to say the very least, as I watch my life literally unfold and get refolded, so it all fits neatly on a barge. I keep picturing my couches floating along the Mediterranean, on their own like seats for the fishies, but our moving company has assured us that that's never happened. I'm trusting you boys, so my stuff better arrive in Israel dry, unharmed, and fish-free!
There are so many questions I get asked on a very regular basis; Any bites on the house? Where will you be living? When are you leaving? How's your family doing with all of this? Do ALL the kids want to go? What will you be doing? What will Josh, my spectacular hubby, be doing? None of these questions are rude, invasive, inappropriate, or beyond the normal scope of stuff people want to know. HOWEVER..... I need a break! These questions are hard for me sometimes (OK, now is one of those times) because they remind me, en masse, that we are really doing this. I think its wonderful that folks are excited for us, proud of us, and some, jealous of our move. But this is A LOT to process, y'know? I had a madricha (counselor) on my NCSY (Jewish teen group) trip to Israel in 1988 who said that her mom, when they moved from the East Coast to the Holy Land, told her there are three things you need if you're going to make this move. You need the will and desire, you need cash, and you need to be 100%, certifiably crazy. I've got #1 down, thank G-D we have the cash to do this, and #3? Yeah, I mastered that a long time ago!
I know that in my heart and soul, in the teeniest little cells in my baby toe, that raising a Jewish family, my Jewish family, in Israel is, frankly, where its at. But that doesn't mean that I'm not scared out of my mind, nervous about what pundits call the "political climate," or afraid that my Hebrew won't be up to snuff fast enough. I have four bright, really wonderful children who are, like a certain mommy they know, rather opinionated and emotional. I'll be dealing with my own adjustment, my husband's, my kids', and our dog's! I pray that our Maggie doesn't keel over from anxiety on the plane, but am grateful that her psychological well-being is best handled by tummy rubs and treats. Oh, were that the case with us!
A word about my husband. Josh has been ready to get on a plane and head to the Holy Land since he was in utero. It helps that he was instilled with a love of The Land from that time. And I know that he is so ready to board that plane and say, "I'm AN ISRAELI!!!!" But I also know that he will be adjusting, transitioning from someone who goes to work everyday and has quite a bit of professional responsibility, to a shorts-wearing, unpacking-maniac, who is, at the moment, unemployed in Israel. I anticipate, despite his poo-poo'ing me about this, a bit of an identity crisis, a good deal of pleasure with the fact that his daily grind won't be so, well, grinding, and an adjustment to what he left behind and the challenges that lie ahead.
I know that in time, I will look back at this period and be able to smile, knowing that we did it, I mean we REALLY did it. We're quite a ways from that time and I know that we have much joy and many struggles ahead. G-D doesn't give us, or allow us to choose to tackle, anything we really cannot handle. I pray for His strength, His wisdom, and eventually, a clear path past the boxes and beyond.