This year I went with my brother his rabbi’s family and it got me thinking a lot.
Siblings and family- This seder was three sister’s families eating and being together. All the cousins (and there were a lot) all knew each other and acted as siblings twords one another. Sitting there and watching this, it made me realize two things. One, that I never had that- my cousins have always been far away, and people I speak to very rarely. Two, it makes me sad that my children might not ever have that. There was something really nice and beautiful of how these siblings interacted with each other and how close they were, and realizing that my choice to live in a different country and be away will make that potentially not be able to happen for me and for them. Even though at times I feel/felt suffocated by family, I still want them in my life. I need to figure out how to make that happen.
Some thing about going to a different seder every year, now for six years, I realize that I somehow am forgetting what are the traditions (if any) of my family. What are the tunes, what are the jokes, etc. I also don’t remember much, except for being annoyed at the seder– that could be because we almost never had guests. But from going to other people here are some things that I hope to have at my seders in the future (when/should I have my own):
- Family- as much family that is able to come should be there.
- Guests- as many guest and different people to ease the tension of family/cleaning/etc. But also to add in different traditions or stories to make it more interesting.
- Having people prepare specific things- that way everyone invited can participate. No one has to feel as if they don’t know enough to talk, and they had enough time to look into it. This might also help with people feeling comfortable to talk in the middle, because we are already building a place for personal comments.
- Sitting on couches/in a different room for maggid– it is so much more comfortable than at the table.
- Making sure there is water and vegis to snack on during maggid–it makes it so much more enjoyable.
- Hitting people during dayenu– a great opportunity to get up and move during a night of a lot of sitting.