Posted in Life, Overwhelmed

Constant Motion

This time last year, at least in the Jewish calendar was my first Shabbat in Australia.

This time this year, is my last Shabbat in the apartment in New York. I will be moving out on Monday.

Sunday is an in and out trip to Atlanta. Thursday I am off to Colombia for two weeks. When I return I am starting my new job here in NY.

This is my last Shabbat living in my own apartment. It has been an entire year of living alone, and my next apartment will be with roommates.

Once again it is the Shabbat before Tisha B’Av. The world just feels tense – people storming the Temple Mount; only last Shabbat a family was stabbed to death while eating Shabbat dinner and anticipating a celebration to welcoming in their new baby; the plans for health care in the US have been going up and down, people terrified for their lives and the lives of their loved ones; leaders of the world making declaration against people- telling them they are not allowed to be part of the community, they are less than, they are not wanted…

Once again we will sit on the floors, reading Eicha, crying or at least trying to. We will think about what we can do better for the world. Look at the broken state of it all. Think about all of the bad- those who are hurting; those that are in need; those that are broken- and trying to come up with some way to rationalize it and find ways to try and make the world a better place.

But before we know it, that day is over. Then 6 days later is the day of love. Then 7 weeks later it is already Rosh Hashana…

And then the year has begun again. The holidays; the birthdays; the special events; the memories of where we were last year this time; the applying for what is next; the making decisions; the waiting…

The waiting for answers from others and based on those answers the hope that what is chosen is the right thing. Maybe it will be a choice for a year? Or two? Or 12? Or the next 50?

Who knows where I will be this time next year….



Posted in Life

Where Should I Move? (The NY Apartment Hunting Edition)

It is the end of the July and once again this year I need to move. I need to move out of the apartment that I am subletting by the end of the month. It is crazy to me that it is already the summer– at times it seems like only yesterday that I saw this place. It was the middle of winter. I had just arrived back in the US. And the summer and future seemed so far off.

This time last year (at least in the Jewish calendar) it was about 5 days before I moved to Australia! Oh how a year has passed…but that is for another time.

As I will be staying in NY for another year, I must find a new place to live. I need to move out, basically this week, as next week is Tisha B’Av, and then I fly to Columbia for two weeks on the 3rd of August, and the guy I am subletting from comes back the 14th.

I have so many thoughts playing out about where I want to live. So far nothing has stuck out and made me feel like it would be home for me. But as of right now I have narrowed it down- although I still don’t feel sure.

I am debating about living on my own vs. living with roommates.

Living on my own is great. I have my own space, I can do what I want when I want to. It is my mess. It feels more adult, I am almost 32 (if I can’t have a place with a significant other, I might as well be with someone else). But on the other hand, it is more expensive and can be lonely.

Living with roommates could be good. It is cheaper. I don’t need to buy a whole apartment worth of furnishings (I have nothing but clothing and some books, so I would have to buy EVERYTHING). I would also not have to deal with the annoyance of setting up internet and bills. These past couple of months in NY have been quite lonely, but if I lived with other people I would be able to meet their friends (and hopefully even become friends with them). But the apartment wouldn’t be mine, I would be entering into someone else’s home, and try to figure out their rules and how things run. I would not be able to have people over whenever I wanted or do what I wanted all the time.

But maybe that is worth the money…

In short I have 4 options:

A. A studio that is $1950 a month (yay NY pricing 😦 ). It is actually a decent size. It has a laundry. It is on the first floor. [Down sides: small, studio, 18% yearly rent as commission…]

B. A friend’s 1 bedroom apartment. 5th floor with an elevator. $1950. Nice apartment, the living room is really big. [Downside: NO LAUNDRY]

C. Girl’s apartment (2 other girls). $1550 a month. Elevator, doorman, laundry room. Large apartment, has a porch, light, the girls seem nice. [Downside: one of the girls has been there for 8 years- not sure how I feel about entering into someone’s space; they could say no, which then could mess up getting D or another option if they don’t tell me quick enough; I’m worried about living with UWS girls…; I am worried that I might want people over and they won’t like it]

D. Guy’s apartment (2 other guys). $2100 a month. Elevator, doorman laundry IN THE APARTMENT. Really large bedroom with a toilet. Large living room, great kitchen, porch, lots of light. Guys seem nice. They already sent me an email saying they want me to take it. [Downside: The price, it is really expensive….; stigma of being religious and living with guys]

So this is what it is. Choice D told me they want me. I think I am leaning towards C (really only because of pricing- if they were the same or even only $100 difference I would go with D), but C I need to give me an answer, and NY apartments go super fast, so if I ask for a day for D, they might not give it to me, and if C says no then I am left with nothing.

I am also worried that I am “down grading” by going from my own place to a shared place, and if I have the option maybe I should go with that…even though having my own place has not really brought me all that many people into my apartment.

Ok, so if anyone is out there reading this, and if it makes sense at all- WHAT SHOULD I DO? (I kinda have to talk to people in the morning EST).

Posted in Dating, Life

Just Lying There Being Held

It has been about a year since I have been held. A year since someone wanted to be that close to me and just lay there. I know that I missed it, but I didn’t realize how much.

I am not someone who dates often, even though I want to. I’m not someone who gets asked out often. I’m not someone who notices being hit on or people checking me out.

When a friend approached me and asked if I would sleep with him- not have sex- to actually just sleep in a bed with him, at first I laughed. I thought he was being funny, both in the request and the fact that he asked me. His reasoning was that he was lonely and he missed touching people. I also secretly wished that I had the guts to say that was what I was missing, and to just go ask someone I was close with to fulfill that need.

Even though at first I laughed and said no, slowly we have begun just being there for one another. A few weeks ago we had a Shabbat meal that was just the two of us, and the next day he came to my house and spent the whole afternoon with me, in my bed. It was weird at first that he was there- but then in some ways even weirder when he left. The apartment was quiet again. I didn’t have someone holding me.

July 4th the two of us went to the East River to see the Fireworks. We walked all the way down to the river and stood there, close but not touching, watching the fireworks with thousands of other people. We didn’t talk or touch, but I knew that he was there.

And then there was this Shabbat, where he was at my house again all afternoon. Once again we were laying in my bed, this time instead of just laying side by side, he put his arm around me. Weirdly it was something I wanted to happen, and so I didn’t even squirm when it happened. I had been thinking about him for the past few weeks. I don’t think I am attracted to him, although I am very much not repulsed by him. We have both been clear that we don’t want to date each other, but neither of us have anything else going for us, and there is a level of trust. It weirdly felt normal.

And so,  I just laid there savoring the feeling of being touched.  Feeling the heat of another person. The pull that feels like someone wants you just where you are. The light touches that remind you that you have a body and someone else is also interested in it.

via Daily Prompt: Savor

Posted in Life

On Seeing Old Friends and Starting a New Life

For the past week I have been up in Canada. My primary reason was to see my roommate from Israel. I missed her when I was there for Pesach because she was in Nepal on an internship.

Throughout this year we have had a whatsapp group (again I am so grateful for the internet), so we have been mostly in touch, but once again I am reminded the great differences of being in the presence of a person and just being able to talk to them. I really missed hanging out with her. I forgot about how she acts around people, what are her quirks, what is our dynamic when we get to be with one another.

She also had a very difficult year. For her, it was the loneliness and difficulty of living in a rural village in Nepal. Working with new people. Having some difficult situations with those people and literally having no where to go. She was faced with great poverty. She had to walk up mountains to get work. Went through weeks without running water- meaning there was little to no showering or washing clothing. She lived in a country where no one spoke her language, and she did not speak the language very well (if at all). Before I left Israel we spoke about her applying to this program, an dhow she wanted a new adventure. She wanted to be able to get out of her comfort zone and push herself a bit more. It definitely did that- but potentially did it too much.

I was happy to be able to see her and be with her as she transitions back into the everyday. I am also greatly saddened, because in only a few short weeks she is going back to Israel to be with our friends. The whatsapp group that was mostly outside of Israel, everyone but myself will be back in Jerusalem. It is hard for me, as it is already happening, there are less posts on the group, because people are able to see one another. They are hanging out, having shabbat together, or actually in the same physical space. So once all four are there, I know that the messages will come even less frequently. I know that everyone will continue moving on and growing and changing. Just they will all be together, and I will be doing that in NY…