It’s a new week and I am excited because Levi is on a normal sleeping schedule so I can maybe find an hour or two to be solo. (not that I am one to say I a break, more that alone time is the time I can take to breathe and work on the ultimate goal of slowing down my mind…)
So far being in the streets of Jerusalem, and its beaches, in itself has had a secret power. I feel the constant need to smile, to inhale, and of course then to exhale. I want to pause each moment and even as I use all my might to push the stroller up a big hill, it is still a time that makes me want to his ‘pause’. These streets have made their way into my soul and I do feel my mind is quieter. I have not even connected my US telephone number to my iphone (Which we paid for, #haha) because I am so attracted to this feeling of being away from all of it. whatever “it” is. I start to miss my family, especially my siblings kids, but being in a peaceful environment is compensating. I am grateful that by 3:00pm my time I am in communication with family, and we are able to feel like we are hanging out just by using Facetime. It is great how little it takes for me to feel a sense of happiness here. Perhaps because it still can feel like a vacation, and because the weather has been hot and sunny everday, but also because I am totally hooked to the feeling of being somewhere with meaning.
The streets have meaning, the buildings have history, and most importantly all the people walk with a completely different “swag” than what we feel in NYC. The moms are proudly with their kids during the day, the dads are even more proud to be in the park with the kids after 4pm once their work day is over. Parents are engaging with their kids, running after them through the green grass… something about the air here must be more attractive than being on an iPhone. The sense of freedom I feel from the kids around me in itself make Israel seem like a foreign country to me. It is intimidating in a way to hear all the Hebrew, but I love knowing that each day I get more used to it…
I am starting to feel that “present” feeling I talk about in the thoughts page. I watch as Levi feels more attracted to the grass and the leaves each day. I bring a ball for us to play with to the park but sometimes he is happy to sit, cross legged, and study a leaf. There is no greater feeling that taking this time to learn the lessons of nature that seem so much clearer here than what I am used to…
I have not really been one to ever take time to feel one with nature, until I found yoga. So, there is even more reason within my to have a few ??? mixed with 🙂 moments while I sit here appreciating feeling the grass itch and see a bug or two in the air.
As the week goes, for the first time Levi and I walk to the Old City just us 2. Definitely not the same without strong dada shlepping the stroller up/down the stairs for us — we actually had to look for ramps…
This is the part of Jerusalem that we walk through to enter the Western Wall, AKA the Kotel. I wonder what attracts me so much about walking to the old city of Jerusalem.. there is a sense of bliss that fills my entire being with each step I take, for once the stroller wheels become louder than any thoughts in my head.
Benjamin Disraeli: “The view of Jerusalem is the history of the world; it is more, it is the history of earth and of heaven.”
We sit at a cafe and end up chatting with my sister on the phone for a half hour. I try to explain to her that there are no words for the feelings I feel, and even as I sit here to type I am going to save my feelings for the “mama thoughts” part of my site, and try to keep this “blog” part as factual, just to make sure I don’t lose you in emotion.
To steer away from how I feel and focus on what we have done this week:
-I went to a yoga class, fully in hebrew! the yoga studio, Inspire Jerusalem, had a similar vibe than what I am used to in NYC… except the teacher was exceptional, better than I have had in years! And that is with not even knowing 1/2 of what she is saying, lol. I caught on to the flow of the class because it is thankfully the type of practice that is similar throughout the world! I sat next to a window and got to feel the Jerusalem air on me while flowing… It was the first time I wanted to really sit and concentrate on my breath, making sure to take it all in. The class was 1 hr 30 minutes, and afterwards I met Carly F. for a drink at the First Station which always has lively music and lots of people which was fun.
-Levi and I took a Sheirut to Tel Aviv and we went to see Estee’s apartment in Yaffo, and then went to the beach with her and baby Aluma! I am so happy my cousin Estee has really become a beautiful mama, Levi and his ltitle cousin got good sand time in.
It was a long day and Levi has changed a lot and started to scream a lot. I mean screech. I don’t even want to put this (hopefully) temporary habit into words because I want it to pass so I will leave your imagination run by what a screaming 1 year old is. Thankfully everyone at the Tel Aviv beach seemed used to it as this entire country seems to be geared towards babies. Estee and I had some beer, Levi ate loads of watermelon, and we sat in the shade enjoying the day, watching the clear Mediterranean.
The next day was the type of day where my mother instinct of letting Levi have the day to play and B E after a hot day at the beach kicks in. The three of us have lunch near Machana Yehuda, and we wind up making a late lunch/early dinner in the park… consisting of tomatoes, cheeses, bread, and wine for the parents. Each day Levi crawls further away from us in the grass. He goes speedier too every time. I am not only starting to see his personality develop, but I am learning as a mom what it means to help your kid be independent. (i am sure i really have no idea what that really means but I am thinking maybe this is the start). I know because he looks back every few minutes that he knows either dad or me are nearby watching. He turns back and smiles as us while squinting his eyes from the bright day and I can hardly contain how his face makes us feel!!!
It is that same face I get to see when we sit at the shore and wait for the crashing waves… and that same face is what starting to play hide and seek with ME while we sit poolside.