July 14th is my two year anniversary
July 14th marks my two year anniversary of making aliyah. It has been a literal aliyah for me. The changes in my life both personal and external have made me “rise up” and reach a personal place that I didn’t even realize I wanted.
When I decided to be proactive and finally move here instead of just talking about it… I never realized the dramatic changes that would occur in my life.
I was quite aware of the challenges of aliyah. Finding a job, a home, the language and cultural differences are just some examples of the obvious and well know challenges. Making a new “family” of friends was another.
When I arrived I was glowing. I finally DID it. I moved here with the wonderful support of my family friends and of course G-d. I found a job and an apartment within a month. Issues that I had been worried about just fell into place quite quickly and easily. I had some wonderful friends living here before I made aliyah and were became my new support system or my new “family”. I also have wonderful relatives here like my sister and brother-in-law and their family, aunts, uncles, grandparents and cousins. I was lucky because I had people to turn to in need.
This period of being content after years of personal struggles and strife has been an amazing gift. It has allowed me to be introspective and figure out exactly what it is I want out of life. Not just superficially but internally. What do I want out of life? How do I want to be a better person? How to become the person I have always wanted to be but was too scared to even figure out who that might be. What kind of relationship I want to have with my beliefs? These past two years have led me on such a productive and eye opening path. My return to my religious roots and now nurturing and growing those roots is another example of internal contentment. For a number of years I made the subconscious choice not to be religious. I didn’t sit and think why should I be or not be religious. I just decided to be lazy. I knew that at some point in life I would return but ehhh why be religious at that point in life. Up until that point religion was not a personal matter between me and G-d but between me and my parents, me and my friends, me and my community. It was not all that much of an internal but rather external relationship. Now my relationship with G-d is a personal one. It is about love and respect which have for Him and it has helped me incorporate that into my dealings with people on a day to day basis. Most of my friends and acquaintances have a preconceived notion as to who I am religiously. On the other hand I have connected to some very amazing people which have changed my life forever. We all come from such different backgrounds and when we talk about life issues that I just never thought about come up they make me think what I would do in their situation. But for me it is ironic that some of my toughest choices I need to finally make are ones that are viewable to the public. If I wore all skirts right now people would assume that I am at a specific religious level.
But on the other hand ……….
The contentment of “making it” here is starting to wear off. I have achieved my external goals of making aliyah, finding a job, a home and a new family of friends. I have achieved the internal goal of figuring out what kind of productive and ongoing relationship I want to have with G-d.
But now I am feeling edgy; I have realized that there are new goals to strive to conquer. These new goals are about conscious choices on a daily basis. When I made aliyah I intentionally chose not to date anyone until I had been here at least 6 months. I wanted to make sure I could stand on my own two feet and not just survive but thrive. I now know I can stand on my own two feet and depend on my inner strength and my friends and family when I need to. I have regained the faith in myself that I lost years ago. I am now ready to find the man I want to marry. I have figured out and am now proactive in my relationship with G-d. I am working on being the woman I have always wanted to be. There is no more fear in making these choices and letting myself grow and change.
I wonder what will happen over the next two years……