I know it’s been a couple weeks and I have a lot to write about.
I find myself driving to and from Jerusalem thinking about what I want to write and then when I get home - I don’t.
For one reason or another – I don’t.
There are reasons, or are they excuses? Doesn’t matter.
I apologize to my uncle and others who have patiently waited for me to write something…anything!!
Timing. Perfection. Writing the right thing. Not sure how much. When? Sometimes I just get stuck.
When I was three years old and living in Bangkok, Thailand, my mother took me to Madame Damon’s ballet school. I danced for the Queen of Thailand. Even got to shake her hand. I think. Or is that from Ely’s Angelina story?
I know I was a ballerina from a very young age. When we moved back to the US, I continued dancing at Mrs. Morrison’s dance studio. I danced ballet until I was 14 or 15. One or two of those years I even danced on toe (I had toe shoes and would do pirouettes like a pro!)
I got bored of ballet. I took jazz – downtown Frederick. Didn’t like that so much. Took tap – near Braddock Heights, I think. One year on tap and I was already becoming religious. No more recitals on Shabbat. I stopped dancing. And became religious. And something inside me got lost.
I loved to dance at weddings and Shabbatonim. In college I would go to dance clubs. I can still feel the bass rhythm vibrating in my body when I pay attention to it. I always loved to dance. As I got older, more religious, I lost the dancer in me. She was not modest. She did not know how to be expressed. She was stifled. I wrote about her in my thesis. I miss her.
Three weeks ago, one of my fellow teachers at the Michlala in Jerusalem where I am teaching asked if I would like to go with her to a ballet class in Modiin. I thought of every reason why I could not.
Until NED told me, in her wise, innocent way, “Imma GO! You never have any fun. You work so hard all the time and never have any fun. You’re going!”
So I went. And spent most of the night holding the bar with tears dripping off my chin. Couldn’t really tell you why. I hadn’t held a bar, done a plie, jete, balance or danced in front of a mirror in almost 30 years. I had a hard time following the steps. Remembering the steps. And when the teacher encouraged us with, “Don’t worry about getting the steps. Just FEEL them,” I cried. After the class I approached the teacher in tears to thank her. She looked at me with a warm smile, “You used to be a dancer, weren’t you? I can see it in you.”
I bought a pair of ballet shoes. Ely wants to know where my tutu is! I still don’t recognize the dancer in the studio mirror, nor does the body remember the steps. But the dancer in me, deep in my soul, she remembers. When I feel the rhythm, the music, the moves, she remembers.
So there you have it. Not a literary genius of writing. But the story of me still being a ballerina, nonetheless, true.
Here are a couple more goings on to catch you up:
- I am teaching somewhat successfully. The Hebrew-only speakers are getting very frustrated. I’m doing my best. I enjoy teaching.
- Just finished a 4 part mini course on creative approaches in working with teens – in English. Went over very well. Very proud of myself.
- Taking ulpan, So much to learn – and remember!
- Getting G-d’s guidance in my private work. Appreciating my abilities and noticing my weaknesses
- Letting go of DB is not easy for me.
- I had a realization that I keep waiting for something to happen. Then I realized it already is. I’m in it. It’s happening. What else am I waiting for?
- Missing my family and friends on the other side. Ready for my January visit.
I am an auntie again. B”H. That’s exciting!
NED’s room is a mess. So is mine.
I love my cozy warm PURPLE Bearpaw boots!
Chanukah is here – family time!
11 (so far) sleeping guests for Shabbat Chanukah. Wanna come too?
Hope this will do for a while…