A few weeks ago, I joked about holiday cards and how mine never ever came out as perfect as my friend, Traci’s. As I stuffed and labeled cards this morning, I knew two things for certain: 1) Traci’s card won this year (I received it and it is gorgeous) and 2) I will not be sending a holiday card next year. Not because of defeat, but due to the fact that exactly one year from tomorrow, my oldest son, Jackson, will be having his Bar-Mitzvah. I rarely talk about religion on this blog, and although becoming a Bar-Mitzvah in the Jewish religion signifies a boy becoming a man, this is less about religion and more about holy shit for me.
Yes, I did swear and talk about my religion in one run-on sentence, but really my oldest son and I attended a meeting yesterday about what the next year will hold for him. The rabbi explained what Jackson’s studies will include along with his #responsibilities. Luckily, the rabbi is one smart dude and clued in early that this was less about age-old prayers and customs for us but rather extremely significant in symbolizing Jackson’s role as a person of the community. For me, religion has always been about values, respecting others, and carrying oneself in a do-good kind of way in this world and not so much about reciting a prayer in a specific way. Oh, I am sure Jackson will recite his prayers and learn his part, but he will also do a mitzvah (good deed) project and recognize a Jewish child who perished during the Holocaust. He will learn about giving to the community at large while being one of the last generations of kids able to connect with survivors of the Holocaust to understand why such hatred can never happen again. That is what it is all about for us.
Anyway, I digress. The Bar-Mitzvah year is upon me, and I cannot deny that a panic like none other is enveloping me. How will I do it all? As I navigate the murky waters of manufacturing a product, build this blog and relationships with brands for my 2013 projects, and think of all my responsibilities at home, I am perplexed. I know I will get it all done because that is just me, but don’t think for a minute that I am not sweating every detail. Part of me wants every last i to be dotted just-so, and the other part says ‘screw it’ because that is not life. I just know one thing, I am not going to send a holiday card among collecting Bar-Mitzvah RSVP’s and keeping up with work and oh yeh, my other son….
So, this is it. The last hurrah with holiday cards (for now) and even more mystifying, this is the last hurrah with my son being a ‘kid.’ In a year from now, he will be considered an adult. Maybe that is why Mark Zuckerberg made the legal age for Facebook to be 13 years old? No doubt. Jackson is counting the days and minutes until he can sign up for a profile. He is already an instagram addict and quickly becoming a lover of the hashtag and all things social media (he is my son). I want him to engage but beware of the pitfalls. I know that I cannot control every aspect except the dialogue between us, and that is what I hope we will continue to do even as he becomes an adult (maybe that was the case way back in the bible days, but I use that term very loosely).
The Bar-Mitzvah presents yet another dilemma for me other than whether I send out an holiday card or not. It brings to light what I do mainly. I write here and many other places on the internet, and there has already been a hint with several vendors that maybe, just maybe I will include them in my writing if they are a part of the Bar-Mitzvah after party. This has been something that has been on my mind for a while now, and I am pretty certain the answer is a firm no.
This is Jackson’s year of hard work and diligence and when we celebrate that – that is all it will be about. Jackson’s hard work. If JB and his friends want to instagram away the day and night (after services)…that is their business, but not mine. So, after this post, I will not be chatting Bar-Mitzvah except for a possible reference to being unbalanced in all I do.
Regardless, I am already so proud of Jackson, and I know he is going to do so well. I am actually kind of excited to hop on the roller coaster of the next year, and silently smiling that I do not have to stress over a holiday card picture next year.