Happy New Year to my beautiful community, near and far!
I’m a couple days late in wishing you a happy new year, but I’m also a couple months late in letting you know what’s going on in my life. I’ll post a really awesome post describing how awesome my life is, later this week, but this post is more one to really tell you about some of the hardships that I’ve encountered since making Aliyah.
Before making Aliyah, everyone said that life in Israel is hard. Yada, yada, yada, people say life in America is hard too, but I’ve never seen that as a challenge I couldn’t take on. Life, for the most part, Thank G-d, has always been kind to me. Sure I’ve had challenging moments, but not like the Israeli hard life.
What does it mean for life to be hard? For me, as a new Olah (a new immigrant), life is hard for many reasons. My American life, filled with my family, friends, English, Whole Foods, Kale, and almost anything I needed at the tip of my fingers, no longer exists around me. I am here, in a foreign land, by myself.
I speak Hebrew well enough to get by, but not well enough to have a deep, meaningful conversation. I changed my name to my Hebrew name, (which I’m growing more and more connected to, daily), I am constantly making and taking first-impressions, and I am no longer at the place where I can compare the New Israeli Shekel, to the American dollar, because I’m no longer earning money in the American dollar form.
I am forced to let go of my American, everything I’ve known, and am forced to embrace the Israeli culture. Don’t get me wrong, by no means do I dislike my American life, nor do I want to forget it. I love America, and I left America on great terms. The difference however is that I cannot keep my mind in a place of constantly comparing apples to oranges. The two will NEVER be the same. And so, for my own sanity, I must learn to let go of the apples, and embrace the oranges. Because that is my life.
Recently a tour guide I traveled with explained this process as one in which a part of the new Olah dies. Whoa, how intense! After he spoke about the struggles aforementioned, I realized, this was the first time someone else was able to put into words, the way I have been feeling. After making Aliyah, nobody handed me a the sign: in order to succeed, LET GO OF EVERYTHING YOU THOUGHT YOU KNEW ABOUT LIFE. Is that what people meant when they said, “life in Israel is hard?”
With that all said, I have manifested my life here, and other than the whole, “letting-go” thing, the stars here are shining brighter down on me than ever before. The moon is constantly smiling, and I, Chanah Auerbach, am smiling back!
In the picture above, I found the words; LOVE, FREEDOM, and HAPPINESS. I’m excited for 2014 as I know those are the things my year will be filled with. Please comment to let me know what your year is filled with!
Wishing everyone a love beyond lightyears, with gratitude to the moon,
Happy New Year!