Apr 6, 2010

A Spiritual Drought


Okay, we're not experiencing a drought. We as in the greater global community, that is. So far as I know, especially after all the flooding a few weeks ago (global warming!?). I'm talking personal drought. Spiritual drought. People always tell me that they're mind-blown about my attitude toward being Jewish and toward Judaism. I'll admit, I do get kinda overly stoked 99 percent of the time about everything related to being Jewish and living Jewishly. I can't help it. My neshama is perpetually on fire. But then there's that 1 percent of the time (I'll admit, it's probably greater than that), where I just feel, well, droughty.

Now, as it seems, is one of those times.

I'm guessing it's largely because I haven't stepped foot in a synagogue in a month. We've had Shabbats in the Poconos and Manchester and then those days in Florida. We'd hoped to be in the community for this past Shabbat and the last two days of the chag but as it turns out, my body didn't agree with Passover this year. First it was a stomach ache, and then it was a day of dizziness that started off with me falling over after getting out of bed. The weekend continued with the stomach ache, me popping pills and sleeping a ton. I went out and bought more vegetables, thinking that the more produce I consumed the less my body would reject the matzo that was in everything (if it wasn't matzo, it was farfel or matzo meal). But it didn't let up. I didn't sleep Sunday night or last night. I got up today and ate breakfast, subsequently crawling back into bed for three hours. Then, today, mid-meal my face got warm and flushed and after looking in the mirror I realized the left side of my face was bright red.

It was Passover and a girl couldn't catch a break.

I'll admit I feel better after going out and buying some Honey Kix, yogurt, Arnold's flats, and beans and corn for a proposed Crockpot Mexican Chicken. My face is still warm, but less red. My stomach has calmed a bit, but not enough that I feel comfortable sleeping.

I know, I know. I'm kvetching, a lot. But I feel like I have to force myself into synagogue this weekend, no matter how I feel, so I can feel more myself. I don't know if synagogue will do it or if I throw myself back into my academic work (there's less than a month left and I'm freaking out) I'll suddenly feel more plugged in.

The long and short of it is that there's no shame in feeling drought-worthy. Not in my book anyway. No one can be 100 percent on with HaShem all the time; in fact, if you do, then something's wrong. You're not battling and conversing and questioning enough. Sitting back and taking stock of where you're at is part of the game, no matter what religion to which you belong. If everything always feels right, you're setting yourself up for a complete crash. A brick wall. A loss in something grand.

Anyhow. I'm praying that getting some regular dairy and bread back in my system will help me not feel like World War III is rocking my body. Not sleeping, waiting for everything you eat to make you sick, these aren't fun. They're keeping me from my community.

I need a good, serious daven. A private moment with HaShem in the arms of the community.


Anonymous said...

I am so with you on this. When people tell me that they have never questioned, I think one of two things. Either they are lying (to me or to themselves) or they have yet to progress beyond a pediatric God-concept.

Jews struggle. We question. We recalibrate. We seek. We search. That's who we are and what we do.

I do hope you feel physically better soon so that you can return to the soulwork!

Chaviva said...

@Rivster The thing about the non-questioning is that it kicks me back to my (emotionally difficult) days growing up in the Bible Belt and in Nebraska when people were confident and stern in their ways, unwavering to the point where questions meant you were a disbeliever. I don't think it's healthy, in any religion.

Thanks for the well wishes :D

SusQHB said...

There's a chance we'll be in W. Orange for a Shabbaton next month. Might be a good opp to be in a nice community shul...and see the two coolest people you know....

Chaviva said...

@Sus WHEN!? Fill me in on the details :)

Anonymous said...

I think this is totally normal. Just before Passover I was feeling that way. I decided to go to shul for the Pesach davening and I felt transformed. I feel renewed. It's nice.

I hope you get there this Shabbat or the next Shabbat or sitting at home and looking out at the beautiful day. It will come.

Dunking Rachel said...

it is just being a human...there is a natural flow to these types of things...I went through a significant "uninspired" period of time...but then something sparked and I am there in my passion again.....
Pesach is HARD...I think it is suposed to be hard...but the food thing is rough on my digestive tract...and when that is not right...I'm not too right....

you have been sooooo much latly so many highs.... there is bound to be a stillness a period on uninspred...

like clouds in the sky it comes and go


Minnesota Mamaleh said...

excellent, honest post. thank you. we're all quench-worthy and soul-searching when we scratch the surface. and that's what it's about, as well it should be.

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