Rosh Hashanah Reflection
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Rosh Hashanah Reflection

My experience welcoming the Jewish new year.

Rosh Hashanah Reflection
The Huffington Post

Well, the fall season is finally upon us. It’s time for pumpkin spice coffee, apple cider and lots of candy.

It’s also time for some holidays, such as Halloween and Thanksgiving. For myself and others in the Jewish community, it’s time for the high holy days of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. This past weekend was Rosh Hashanah.

Rosh Hashanah marks the start of the Jewish new year. Besides it being the time for apples, honey and challah bread, it’s a time when we think about all that’s happened in the past year. It’s also when we think of the changes we want to see in the new one.

This was the second year that I was away from my family for the holiday. I go to school about three and a half hours from where I live, but this being one of the most important holidays, I made sure that I could get home. I packed up my heels, my clothes for temple and headed home. When I walked through the front door, I immediately saw how much has changed.

I walked into a house that was full of new furniture and everything had been moved around. People had moved bedrooms, some stuff had been painted and there were different cars in the driveway. And then I thought about how in just a few months things had changed so much. What about this whole year? I have so much to be grateful for.

I thought about my family and how lucky I am that everyone is still here and still healthy. I thought about my little siblings, who have grown and matured. I thought about myself, and how I’ve learned to be comfortable being away from home.

Before I knew it, it was time to have Rosh Hashanah dinner. I got a little emotional on the inside. My entire family always gets together for this holiday, which doesn’t happen often. My grandparents lead the dinner, we catch up and we talk about what’s happening in everyone’s lives. Everyone always has a new story to tell each year. Everyone is interested in the growth that’s happened around the table.

The very next day, I woke up early in the morning to go to temple with my grandparents. I used to hate going to temple when I was little, but now as an adult, I’m starting to see why my mother used to always make me go. It’s about family and growing closer to one another as Jewish people. I’m grateful that I still have the privilege of going to temple with my siblings and grandparents. I’m grateful I can be home to celebrate with them.

Not everyone can do this. Not everyone is able to be home for the holidays with everyone that they love. So, this Rosh Hashanah, I’m recognizing the blessings that I have. A lot has changed since the last Jewish new year. This year has been full of laughter, tears, heartbreak, growth and new experiences.

And I can’t wait to see what this next year brings.

Shanah Tovah!

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