|Woven round challah, to symbolize the new year. Sprinkles optional.|
But that part right there? That's also the hardest part. Fitting in this extra layer of routine, even when we generally know what to expect, is really difficult. Planning for the days out of the office and school. Doing extra shopping and cleaning for holiday meals. Buying that special new clothing. The most challenging part, though, at least for me, is to get into the mental head space that these 10 days are meant to inspire. We are supposed to reflect on the past year, and ask forgiveness from anyone we might have hurt. We should be thinking about how we'll evolve and try to become a better person in the year ahead. We should be festive and celebratory, but also reflective. And that's really hard to do when you're rushing home from work, and your corneal ulcer still hasn't healed, and you're hungry because you're eating that fancy meal later than usual, and you have to convince your six year old to tuck in his shirt and wear his tight new dress shoes.
And yet, it's worth it. Because of all those things above. Because I don't make time for much reflection the rest of the year, and so it doesn't hurt to make it a priority now. Because the work can wait. Because we don't hug and kiss our friends and family often enough. Because the shofar blast connects us back to our ancestors, to a long gone era. Because the quiet stillness experienced while listening to the shofar is like nothing else I experience all year.
Much of life is the same over the 10 days. But it's also a lot sweeter and richer during those days, too.
* By the way, that friend Sarah, who started all this? She just founded a firm called All in Stride Marketing. She's doing anything writing, editing, marketing, social media, e-newsletters and email marketing, and websites, etc., in Lexington, Kentucky. She has a strong background in the equine industry, but can help businesses outside of the horse industry as well. If you can use someone like Sarah, let me know and I'd be happy to connect you!
(See? You give me blog fodder, I try to pay it forward!)
(That's probably a good thing to do during the 10 days too. Or anytime, really.)