hazzan Diana Brewer was ordained through the aleph ordination program. she leads prayer services regularly at the jewish community of amherst, and is on the staff of the davvenen leadership training institute.

Omer Day 40 הוד שביסוד Hod SheBiY'sod

Gratitude. Awe. Humility. Receptivity. Splendor within Foundation. Grounding. Roots. Creation. Connection. Bonding. 

There were two things I knew about myself from the time I was very young. 1) I was going to be a musician. I'm not even sure if I wanted to be a musician, but I knew I would be. 2) I didn't want kids.  

Growing up female, the question of whether one wants kids is almost a daily occurrence among friends. "Do you want kids?" It's right up there with "What do you want to be when you grow up?" For me, the answer was always, "No! I'm way too selfish for that!" And yes, that is a direct quote. I wanted to be off making music, traveling the world, not tied down to anything. No Roots. No Foundation. Somehow, it never dawned on me that that is exactly what my parents were doing, quite successfully, two kids in tow. Oh, the places we went!

One day, perhaps about two years into my life in recovery, someone (another woman) asked me if I ever wanted a family, kids and all. I knew by then that I could no longer just fall back on the stock answers I always used to give for any recurring questions, so I really took a moment to think about it.  To my great surprise, the answer came back as a "yes" for the first time. Even the kids part. It turned out that, as I had begun building a Foundation in my life, I started to be Receptive to more. As with so many inner shifts I have experienced along the way, no one was more amazed than I. Today, I read the following in my daily meditation book for folks in recovery:

"One of the finest things about recovery is the sharing. Sharing is a wonderful thing because the more you share the more you have. In our old using days, we didn’t do much sharing. We used to keep things to ourselves, partly because we were ashamed, but mostly because we were selfish. And we were very lonely because we didn’t share. When we came into recovery, the first thing we found was sharing. "

I had begun to form real Bonds with people, to really Connect. I was Creating a family and deepening my Roots with my family of origin. This process of building Connection and Foundation was starting to perpetuate itself and to bubble up from within in new ways. 

Today, I have a love/hate relationship with my travels and adventures, as was evident through my writings earlier this week. I've tried to trade it in - music, travel, traveling music - but it seems G8d has other plans for me, so I say Yes to the opportunities I'm given, and fulfill my charge with gusto. And I'm so incredibly Grateful for the Foundation of the homefires kept burning while I'm away, waiting to greet me when I come home. Getting home, I find Splendor in Grounding through the daily duties of home life - grocery shopping, showing up at the school yard at the end of the day to greet my kiddo, sweeping the floor (one of my faves - very meditative). I walked out of the YMCA the other day with a big, goofy smile on my face, in the Gratitude of checking in with my daughter's gymnastics coach about a minor injury she is nursing, and paying camp bills. In short, mothering.

So yes, I find Awe and Gratitude in spades within the fact of Foundation, Roots, and Grounding in my life. (And no, this is not my underhanded way of saying I think everyone should have kids.)

Today, may you be blessed with Gratitude for those things that keep you Rooted. May you be Receptive to Grounding Connections and enjoy the Splendor of Creating a sturdy Foundation. 

Omer Day 41 יסוד דביסוד Yesod SheBiy'sod

Omer Day 39 נצח שביסוד Netzach SheBiY'sod