I've always appreciated Marcia. Well, almost always. But this past weekend the appreciation was manifold!
Up until now, I've been the solo parent for no more than a single night. This weekend Marcia went to an unofficial college reunion and was gone four days. Yes, readers, FOUR DAYS! [Insert violin music here.]
At the same time, my G-dmother, who lives in Dallas, was celebrating her 75th birthday by doing her bat mitzvah. Much of my family was attending so I loaded up the kids and drove to the Big D.
As you might already know, the bar/bat mitzvah ceremony is traditionally a coming of age ritual. The adult bat mitzvah has become more common in recent years because most of Judaic history was not as Equal Opportunity as today's Judaism. Aunt Elise started studying Torah a year or two ago. Her children, her grandchildren, her brothers-in-law and cousins and all done their bar/bat mitzvah, and she decided that she could do it too. And so she did.
The service was very beautiful. The musicians played guitar, flute, and drums, the singers were all women, and the songs were more like Debbie Friedman compositions, rather than the traditional cantorial style. And although Aunt Elise, through date of birth and luck of the draw, got the most boring Torah portion ever, she somehow still managed to deliver a poignant, thought-provoking, and moving sermon. Congrats, to my wonderful g-dmother!
As for solo parenting, the challenges were many, but nobody got hurt. At the hotel, my brother told me in the first hour that one his goals for the weekend was to give his kids (four of them, twins Pearl's age and twins Carrie's age) as much pool time as he could so they'd be comfortable in the water before starting swim lessons next week. That sounded good to me so I quickly adopted this goal for our family and spent many hours in the water.
The benefits of this plan were (at least) two-fold. Not only do the girls seem ready to become starfish next week, but they were also SO tired by bedtime that they didn't even miss Marcia. At least they didn't mention it.
That, friends, was my Marcia Appreciation Weekend. On Monday (Memorial Day) we were all happy to be reunited in H-town.
Photos by David Reagler (a.k.a. Dad/Pop)