Monday, September 29, 2008

The Book of Life

My mother is a reading and kindergarten teacher, so I know a lot about books. And I know that each section of a book is called a chapter. Today is the end to a chapter in my mom's book. After today she will officially be a retired kindergarten teacher.

My mom went back to complete both her undergraduate and graduate degrees in education while I was in elementary school. I know this could not have been easy, but my mom kicked arse. Now, twenty years later, she can finally spend some time relaxing. No more rushing to Target the day after Halloween to secure dozens of bags of clearance candy; No grocery shopping on the weekends with the rest of the world; No doctors appointments or flights scheduled around school vacations. Congratulations, Mom!

The "Book of Life" concept is especially relevant this week, because that is what Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur are all about. On Rosh Hashana the Book of Life is opened. On Yom Kippur, your fate for the year is sealed and the Book is closed. In between the two holidays is an important time for reflection and atonement. You ask forgiveness from those you may have slighted, you give thanks for the year's gifts (e.g, my little AK), and you consider how to improve in the coming year.

It is more spiritual than the secular New Year (natch). These resolutions aren't about losing weight or laying off the alcohol. They are about limiting gossip, pushing out negativity, being a better person. I hope that 5769 (the year according to the Jewish calendar) brings health and peace to all.

1 comment:

Robyn said...

Congratulations to your mom on her retirement.

Shanah tova -- I'll be praying for a happy and sweet new year for us all.