Monday, November 25, 2013

...A Bag of Peanuts At My Feet

I am grateful to G-d for another day of life.  I think I did some good today.  I also think I could have used my time better, but I tend to be hard on myself and balancing one's time (i.e. life) is an art and not a science.

I taught classes. I learned from my students (plaque builds up really quickly and may not be easily removed other than by a dentist if you don't brush regularly [- a student's persuasive speech in speech class], a young person can't always listen to G-d over their parents as Chazal say to [- a ninth grader in Chumash class], structure and rules are a good thing but too much of it can be annoying and even bad [a ninth grader in a discussion about the Aseret HaDibrot and the need for rules]).

A colleague was kind and understanding to me about my dad's situation, busy, yet stopping to show empathy and caring and to listen,  and asking if there's anything s/he can do to help.

Inspired by a friend I ate pretty well today, except for a piece of birthday cake.

At a meeting we celebrated a colleagues birthday and s/he was very touched because it was a hard birthday- first one without mom.  We had a brief but good talk about how your parents are always your parents and I shared the fact that many elderly people approaching death, in their last words, still, turn back to talk about their parents.

Log ins, emails, returned calls. Counseling, meeting, teaching.

We discussed - in Chumash class - the placement of honoring parents on the side of the 10 commandment that is between man and G-d- gave two explanations. I also pointed out how each side goes down from easier and more general and removed to harder and more specific and down to earth (from belief in G-d to actually treating specific people with the utmost honor and respect and from not murdering another human being to not even thinking jealously that you want something that they have).

I called my dad.

I finished The End of Our Life Book Club. Reading that book has been a two month journey. Wow; a beautiful book.  Life is too short to read any books that aren't as touching and potentially transformative as this one.

It's time for sleep. Freud said there are three impossible fields because the job is never done- teaching, counselling and clergy work.  I do all three.  And yet I must let go of the emails and the prep and the worry and let G-d take my soul for the night.

Good night and G-d bless.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just want to say your last two posts, this one and the one about Rabbi Kelemer really touched me, and are especially pertinent to my life this week. THANKS!

November 26, 2013 at 9:02 AM  
Blogger rabbi neil fleischmann said...

Thanks. Positive feedback is so important and helpful in life.

I'll use this space to clarify that i have no direct connection to Rabbi Kelemer or his shul- I was just always taken by how highly people spoke of him. He sounded so real, seeing him was an honor.

The other post was a right before sleep stream of consciousness.

It means a lot to me that my posts are meaningful to you and it means even more that you tell me so.

November 26, 2013 at 2:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I also have no direct connection to him. Some indirect connection through some family members. he's an unbelievable human being!

November 27, 2013 at 2:19 PM  

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