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The Yom After

Sunday, 19 September 2010

No new post today. And not because I have nothing to say. It just will have to wait a day while I get through the heavy murkiness that is the day after The Day.

Meanwhile, head on over to Chavi’s place for this week’s Haveil Havalim. (BTW, no host for next week as of yet. SO feel free to share the responsibility and take a week.)

Please enjoy this repost that will give you some insight as to where my head (and soul) tends to be right after Yom Kippur:


Even under the best of conditions, there is a physical toll that the High Holy Days take. But that isn’t the impact I feel most keenly. It is a type of day-after letdown that is not completely unlike the emotional low after the birth of a child.

The first time I felt it was the day after my Bat Mitzvah service. The house was relatively quiet. The two middle kids and my dad were at Religious School. My mom and baby brother were sleeping. For the ONLY time in my Religious School career, I was permitted to take the day off from school. Standing at the top of the staircase, I remember thinking “now what?!?” as I surveyed all that remained of my big day. Strewn about the living room were books, boxes containing gold charms (a VERY popular B/M gift in the 80’s), Cross pen sets, records, and other post-Bat Mitzvah chazzarei. Thank you notes aside, I couldn’t imagine what would replace all of the time and energy I had been spending each day in preparation for my service.

A little more than eleven years later, a similar experience on the morning after our wedding. I stood at the top of the spiral staircase and gazed down upon my beautiful, lifeless wedding gown that we had carefully laid out on the couch just hours before. {{sigh}}

And each year, in the aftermath of the High Holy Days, I am enveloped by a haze. I move with heavy limbs. And a heavy heart. And the sadness is in direct proportion to the heights of the day before. The more glorious the service, the harder the fall.

I used to think that arrival of Sukkot on the heels of Yom Kippur was a cruelty imposed by a Tradition that didn’t take real life into consideration. Now, with a soul yearning for another encounter with the Divine, I see the wisdom.


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