As one who recalls the most minute details of my childhood, I sometimes struggle to access the present perfect adjective or noun when I’m communicating. Recently, in the car singing along with a much beloved CSNY song from the 70s, I was chagrined when I couldn’t recall some of the lyrics I used to know by heart. And then there’s that daily annoyance of having to search for my missing phone if it’s not in plain sight… I’m forced to ask someone to call me until I can hear it ring, muffled under the unfiled papers that cover it or hiding in the laundry basket with the clothing I have just folded.

Sleeplessness haunts me at times in the bedroom and anxious thoughts make my heart beat faster. I remind myself to inhale and exhale slowly and deeply and I can usually find the calm in my mind… My husband Andy shares with me his own trials in worry and forgetfulness or asks me a question he asked yesterday, and I say to myself…. “Uh oh.” I attribute some of this forgetfulness to the anxiety caused by the troubling state of the world. We worry about our family and friends and strangers, and I find myself ruminating about our future. I frequently call people to check in, and we all agree that life has become so scary and so complicated. I continue to make plans and add future dates on my calendar, and I stay busy, attending inspiring events, meeting with residents, staff and volunteers at JSL to prepare for the upcoming annual fundraiser, “Eight Over 80” May 19th at Congregation Shaarey Zedek.

Eight Over Eighty


Thinking about our 8 incredible honorees and their inspiring lives and all the people who live and work at JSL. I try to stay in the present, focusing on each important moment with gratitude and hope. With a busy life and hectic schedule including family, work, appointments, and the friends on my social calendar, I am grateful for the technology on my phone to keep me organized. Adding new data to the contacts in my phone is a requirement of modern life. If I begin to perform this task and then get distracted by the cardinals on the bird feeder or the beauty of the forsythia in bloom, I simply resign myself to beginning again. Today I found my written but unsent email response to a colleague’s important question. Just another example of the result of multi-tasking while working. Does any of this happen to you?

Perhaps I’m being paranoid, but sometimes when I’m with my daughter or son, I can feel their concern, if I’m not as sharp as I used to be retrieving information about softball and basketball schedules and dance recitals or future babysitting or dog watching dates. One of my favorite things about my kids now is how they take the lead and make the reservations for dinners, plan family get-togethers and always bring a dish to pass when coming for a meal… and while I adore entertaining and hosting everyone, I admit to feeling tired the next day. But I accept this as part of my life now.

As I age, family and friends continue to be more important. I notice the changes in the people around me who are aging along with me. And as I can forgive those around me for showing the inevitable effects of aging, I am learning to accept the same in myself.

Sending all of you my sincere wishes for a joyous celebration of Passover spent in good health with family and friends. Now where did I put my phone?

Shabbat Shalom.

1 Comment:

  • Mary Schwartz /

    I look forward to reading your thoughts each week. Every subject you write about gives me food for thought as the subject matter you choose to write about pertains to thoughts I am having or have had.
    You express yourself so well! Thank you for your thought provoking words!
    Your avid reader,

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