Today marks the beginning of the month of Elul on the Jewish calendar. Elul is that time of the year to reflect and prepare ourselves mentally for the High Holidays approaching. Each day of Elul, I’ll reflect on a theme and invite you to come along on that journey. Feel free to comment with your reflections on the theme, post your own blog or Facebook thoughts, or just quietly give yourself a bit of spiritual space.
Day 1: DO
I suppose it makes sense to start here. Seeing as I’ve been away from writing on this blog for too long. Time to get back in the DOING of writing. It’s an important outlet for me, and I’ve missed it.
I’ve always been a word person. I pride myself on being a person who can use words to make people feel better. It feels good to have words be my “DO.” Sometimes, a note or a phone call with the right words can help make the world a better place. Can help carry someone’s burden. Can help lessen grief.
Still, words sometimes don’t cut it.
Sometimes, I say the wrong thing at the wrong time. Sometimes words are just…empty. Sometimes I try to say something helpful and make someone feel worse. I find it incredibly difficult to forgive myself when that happens. (It’s human, I know. Doesn’t help.)
And I know that words have their limits. Beyond reassurance and love, my words hold intention. I want to be better at knowing when to let words be my “DO,” and when more is needed.
Sure, a note to a colleague is nice.
Showing up to help in her classroom goes a long way, too.
Telling an acquaintance I’m sorry for their loss is a good thing to do.
Showing up to help him mourn speaks even more.
So…to have writing be a “DO?” I’ll admit, it feels strange. But that is why, I suppose, I’m glad tomorrow’s theme is “ACT.”