Thursday, September 5, 2013

L'Shana Tovah

Judaism follows a lunar calendar, so the timing of our New Year fluctuates; this year, Rosh Hashanah is today, and it's the earliest I can remember it falling in a long time.  I love that it's almost always soon after Labor Day, though, because September seems like such an opportunity for renewal anyway.

In some ways, the cooler days and longer nights can feel like a homecoming after the wild abandon of the summer.  We retreat a bit into the familiar, enveloping ourselves in the warmth of those we love and taking comfort in our routines.  Accompanying that is often an urge to reflect, to take this moment of seasonal transition to look back on where we have been and where we want to go.

I went to a New Year's party hosted by Sixth and I last night with two friends* and wandered by a set-up they had in the corner for resolutions.  The organizers had laid out post-its and pens, and you were supposed to write out your goal for 5774 and stick it to a big board, anonymously, with the other attendees' notes.  I don't usually do Hallmark soundbites at the New Year because it seems so arbitrary - why can't you just decide to be better on any other random day?  But I'd been thinking about this for a little while, actually, and it seemed to fit perfectly with the traditional Rosh Hashanah greeting for a sweet new year, so here's what I scribbled down:

I will be more patient with my friends and family.

If I've learned anything from the past year of changes, it's that I must be more understanding of others and accepting of how they deal with situations.  I can learn so much from how those around me approach challenges if I just let them show me rather than barreling through with my own mind made up.  And if it takes us a little time to figure out how to get through, that's okay.  What's important is that we're doing it together, not that we're doing it my way.

So that's my resolution this year as we celebrate Rosh Hashanah and prepare for Yom Kippur.  If you want to read more about this, last year's High Holidays musing is here - it's still one of my favorite posts on religion.  In the meantime, l'shanah tovah tikatev v'taihatem: may you be inscribed and sealed for a good year.

*Also, to Sam, the reader I met at the party: hello! Thank you for introducing yourself.  It made my night!


  1. What a lovely sentiment, I am sure I could be more patient with my husband.

  2. l'shana tova, friend! I say we take any opportunity to change, but why not capitalize on it when it's being shoved in our face? :) And how crazy that you met a reader!

  3. I don't suppose you would ever do a blog on the pronunciation of Jewish holidays and traditions... I have no idea how to say l'shana tova.

  4. If you're already looking to make a change, the occasion is just a good excuse! And your change is a good one. I need to be more patient with the people I care about, too.

  5. L'shanah tovah Betsy.

    I agree - September feels like a great time for renewal. Here's to patience :)

  6. L'Shanah tovah, buddy! Fantastic resolution. But can a person be funny AND strongwilled AND patient? Seems like a lot, but I bet you can handle it all :)

  7. haha - I'll try to put them in the posts from here on out!

    L'shana tovah = lesh-ah-NAH toh-VAH

  8. you know, what? amen! or, as we said in services today, amein :)

  9. haha I say yes. Jon says... well, the verdict's out on that one :P

  10. L'shanah tovah! May it be a wonderful first year of marriage :) I think we can all use a bit of patience in our lives... good luck! xxx

  11. Happy New Year to you! Hope this year brings amazing things to you!

    I just came across your blog! I am so excited I found it.
    I am now following you!
    I look forward to keeping up and getting to read more and get to know you better!


  12. L'shanah tovah! 'Flexibility' is the name of my resolution. I'm trying to channel Mrs Incredible.

  13. Happy new year! I think you're right about September being a good new start month- it's the change in weather and that back-to-school feeling of new things starting. I love your sentiment for the year, too.


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