If Rosh Hashanah is when we are supposed to lift off into the sky of a new year, then the Hebrew month of Elul (which we’re currently in) is the runway preceding our flight. As a mother who generally has no time for anything, I have a true appreciation for the Hebrew month of Elul before the High Holidays as a time that is specially designated to think about all that is to come.
I’m a mom of three, soon to be four, kids, so I get it that “contemplation” is something as rare as “romantic getaway without the kids.” But parenting makes such contemplation more necessary than ever.
As parents, our days can feel like a waterfall of chaos, from the wake-up call from the crib at 4:47 a.m. to the “I had a nightmare, please hold me till I fall back asleep” summons of 11:30 p.m. Days are a seemingly endless tumult of missing shoes, stupid sibling arguments, forgotten lunches, lost permission slips, unmade beds, emotional scrapes, and physical bruises. The days of a parent can feel a hell of a lot like triage, where you respond to whoever’s needs are greatest (or most loudly expressed). Read the rest of this entry →