Posted in Life

A New Year…A New Decade…I Can’t Believe I’m 30

My birthday is in September. Rosh Hashana tends to be in September. And since I am now entering grade 26 (only one more to go after this year) I also mark the start of the school year. This is a time that I use to reflect over the past year, and see where I have changed, where I want to go, etc.

This time around I am turning 30 as well. When I was younger, I always thought that 30 was “old” or “an adult”. But here I am at 30- and many times I don’t feel that way. Yes, I am financially independent. Yes, I have a master’s degree. Yes, many people know who I am. Yes, I have been living in the same apartment for 5 years. Yes, I have been a scholar in residence. But at the same time, I’m still in school.I don’t have a full-time job. I’m not married or in a relationship. I don’t have kids. It really is the question of what makes a person an adult. (There was an article in Bustle today, that I can check yes to all of their list, but I am not sure if I agree.)

Looking back on the past 10 years, as not only is this a new year, but a new decade I can see how much I have changed and
grown, as well as much as I have accomplished. I have lived in three countries, and really made them my home. I completed two degrees (a third will be done next year). I started organizations and communities (both in London and Jerusalem, started an intergenerational theatre program, a multi-denominational beit midrash for Israeli rabbinical students, and more). I have worked in the fields that I want to be working in. I have directed plays and have gotten paid for them. I have friends living almost everywhere in the world (the joke is that I can’t go places without people knowing me, the flip side is that I can travel to lots of places and have somewhere to sleep). I have taught internationally. I am no longer the shy and quiet girl sitting off on the side. I have learned that I have a voice and power, and a lot of the time, actually know how to use it.

This past year was a hard one. I was forced to make one of the biggest choices I have had to make in a long time. It is one that I believe will be professionally beneficial, but at the same time it is a difficult one. It is one that makes me think about what is more important to me- doing what I want to do or being where I want to be. I have built up a world, a community that I am part of, and I know that I have to leave. It becomes more and more clear that nothing is permanent (something I thought changed after grad school).

At the same time, I learned that I have some pretty great friends out there. That I actually matter to the people around me. I am so lucky that not only are my friends there because they like me, but also they support me and my dreams. At times when all I wanted to do was give up, it was them who were there to push me back onto the path, and convince me that this really big change is worth it. I am forever grateful to them.

So thinking about this upcoming year. I will still be learning, just with new teachers and people. I will still be working at the nursing home. I will still be running minyan. I will still be running Gam Yachad. But comes June I will be leaving Israel for at least a year. Leaving my job. Leaving my friends. Leaving my brother. Leaving a country that I went back and forth to, dreaming about living in.

I hope that this year is a year of being uplifted instead of being put down. I hope that this year is a year of being empowered. I hope that this year is filled with joyful learning, without it being hurtful.  I hope that I am able to make the most of the year, and really love being in Israel and around my friends,and take as much as I can from city/country. I hope that I will find a relationship. I hope that I will be able to continue to grow and change and help others grow and change. I that my choices bring good things into the world and into my life. 

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Author:

I am prone to overthinking and not to sharing. I decided to start writing and see what happens. So here are some stories and life situations (sometimes words of Torah) of a 30 something single woman, who happens to be a rabbi (received ordination in 2017- so there are posts of what that experience was like), will be working as a chaplain (and worked for years with older adults), is regularly asked what city she is located in (started the blog while living in Israel, found herself working in Australia, and will be in New York for at least a year), and is just trying to figure out her place in the world.

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