Breaking up to opportunity

It was sparked by a question: “what are you doing there?” Maybe no one has asked me so directly before, or maybe I was too afraid to ask myself. But I heard the message and realised that I was deep within my comfort zone, hiding. Now change has become the answer. Sometimes we have to…

Closing the Circle: the Star of David

Hashem works with such beauty. Majesty really. I’m going back to Israel after an absence of 6 years. It would just be a holiday but really it’s something a lot more meaningful. You see, I’m coming full circle. The first time I came to Israel was on Taglit Birthright, just to please my family. It…

The agunah fight: learning from Rav Ovadia Yosef

I haven’t written about this topic so openly before. Maybe it’s too personal. Maybe it’s too sensitive. Last week, the FBI arrested two Rabbis in USA for beating reculcitrant husbands, and Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, who faught to free agunot, passed away. Nothing in this world is coincidence so I feel it necessary to write, to…

Baal teshuva poem: “alone”

A poem called “Alone” was sent to me by a beautiful young baal teshuva named Malka. It’s precious and I’m sure many can relate to the trials and tribulations behind these beautiful words. Alone I sit at my royal throne as I’m given a second soul to refine my connection I’m away from Jews, all…

Letting go, 1, 2, 3.

More than anything, one of the strongest themes I’ve seen come out of the last two and a half years of my life is one of coping. Coping in tough times is one of the biggest challenges that we all face in our lives at one stage or another. Those that cope better achieve more,…

The German apology

I’ve never really understood people who don’t buy German products because of the holocaust. It always seemed a wasted effort for their piece of protest and act of remembering. But we must remember. In a few days its Yom HaShoah, the commemoration of the holocaust. Before tonight I had never met a German, let alone…

my baal teshuva story

Everyone gets asked. It’s the obvious question. ‘What made you do this?’ I’m not sure if others have a standard response but I still don’t. To me it seems the response changes every time. Maybe it depends whose asking. Lets see if I can give you an answer. What. Myself. I didn’t have a midlife…

Freedom is emuna

Only when you are somehow inhibited in your ability to be, to act, to live do you realize just how internal freedom really is. Despite being completely restricted from dating and moving on with my life because my husband refuses to divorce me through the Jewish gett, I haven’t felt so free for as long…

what I’ve learnt during the three weeks

Everyone has droughts and at other times the world floods you with inspiration. The last few weeks were meant to be some of the saddest in the Jewish calendar. For me they have been all about breakthroughs and inspiration. Fueled by learning from some incredible Rabbis (thanks Rabbi Kelemen and Rabbi Katz), I’ve managed to…

Hashem moved my cheese: a story of emuna

So this is the story of my recent history. An episode like no other. One of loss, courage, searching and building. It’s time to share what I have learnt. Recently I was given a book called ‘Who moved my cheese?’ The Jewish answer to this is clearly Hashem. Hashem moved my cheese. And He did,…

Towards the Chanuka light: go visit the elderly

Just a photo I took today in a nursing home. Made me think how there is beauty and hope even the darkest of places. If you want to do something good today please visit a nursing home. Our wisest and most amazing people feel very alone and demoralized. You don’t have to know them and…

Questions, Truth, Searching

The beauty of a child is their curiosity. The innocent ability to always want to know why. Some ask in defiance, but most ask to really know, to understand. They want to make the connections in their minds, to see the unity that exists. Us too, “the grown ups”, have the curiosity to find meaning….

The baal teshuva status

A baal teshuva is someone who is returning to Judaism. Since this is an on-going state that will apply for as long as you keep learning more and more, at what point can you stop labeling yourself as baal teshuva? Is there a point at which this happens or is it something that is and…

the bigger the Rabbi, the harder the question

I thought it would be so easy – you get a question, you ask, you know, you act. I’ve found that this isn’t the case. The bigger the Rabbi, and I guess the more respect you have for him, the harder it is to ask the questions. I don’t think it’s intimidation – these great…

mixing in the city

There’s something I really love about the city. It has a vibe, a speed about it that excites my sensors and makes me feel like I have birds-eye vision. Every face is unique, every life has a story. It’s so powerful being amongst it. It makes me wonder about Hashem’s awesome power, controlling, manipulating, changing…