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  • The Archer

I Am Here


You know you have those days when the silly things pile up: when the shadchan asks for a different picture where your hair looks less yeshivish and you try to remember when your hair did a mitzvah, when you go on a date and he reveals on the date that he takes girls out to eat because he likes watching them eat, when work is bad, or your body hurts or G-D FORBID you have any type of medical ailment in the post Obama era and now you're out $800 or WORSE you have a women's ailment and since they only discovered that vaginas can have issues in 1992 before that you were just thrown in the loony bin but either way still none of the women's issues are covered by insurance so now you're out $4,500 and they haven't turned on the heat in your apartment yet and why don't you live in a place where you can control the temperature and and and and and and and

And then there's the weight of the THINGS the things that are actually problems and make your little problems seem stupid the children who are hurt by adults and the adults who are in high positions who hurt children and the buildings that collapse in the middle of the night and the divorce rate and the people going off the derech rate and COVID and how expensive meat is and climate change and that every politician is terrible and just rape as a concept and also chickens that we force to eat each other's dead bodies so meat can be sold in bulk at Costco and that Southwest cancelled 17,000 flights and that pasta makes you fatter.

It's so much sometimes. And being Jewish you feel connected and actually ARE connected to so many tragedies. It's never more than 6 degrees of separation and then you feel sad for the people in whatever tragedy happened but you also feel guilty because you don't feel sad enough and you get more sad over a bad shadchan call so obviously you have no soul.

Let me stop projecting onto you, reader. That might just be me.

But I think we're all sad from the things in our lives. Then we're sad about the big horrible things that give us stomach aches and we don't want to think about. Then we're sad that we aren't sadder about those big things because this obviously makes us emotional failures.

And I look around and get scared. There's so much sadness and I want to cope through it.

But everywhere I look are examples of people getting overwhelmed by the sadness and anger and choosing to excuse themselves and live lives numbed by drugs and alcohol. I see people who have lost their minds or lost their connection to G-D because it's just too much. And I'm scared because I get it. I'm half a step behind you most days.

I want to have it all. I want to get married. But if I don't get married I still want to have it all. What does having it all mean? Friendships, mentorships, fun, travel, fulfilling job that allows me to have my fun, family, and staying connected to G-D. To the source of all.

But every thing that goes wrong (especially pasta making people fat. That's just cruel) tries to pull me from G-D. It says to me that G-D hates me or that He isn't there. Look at the children who have been hurt. Isn't that proof?

And I can't answer that question, the big question of why do bad things happen to good and innocent people. I'm no rabbi and if you are using me as your rabbi, please call a psychologist.

Here's what I know.

G-D made the universe.

G-D is running the universe right now.

G-D is controlling each beat of my heart. Which is now beating faster because I'm thinking about it. He's controlling each cell in my body.

I don't know the plan. There is pain and I feel the pain.

But I am here.

And all I can do with knowing I am here is try to add goodness to the world. To live as a Jew the way I believe I should. To know that my choices, no matter how miniscule, matter.

To cry on the nights where I can't take it anymore and then to get up the next morning and continue to make the choices that make me, me. To pick out the Kosher cereal and to sometimes know what the Parsha is and to pray.

And sometimes I choose to drink and dance and forget.

And then I wake up and I go again.

I am here. I don't know what the plan is but I am here and I accept. I don't know if I'll be here tomorrow but right now I am here. I don't know if Miami and New York and LA will exist if the ice caps melt more but right now I am here. G-D I am here and I accept Your will.

If I am here it's because G-D wants me to be here.

When you see me on the subway, talking to myself, I hopefully haven't lost my mind yet. I'm hopefully just telling myself I am here.

Make sure I don't miss my stop. I may be here but I don't want to have to go further than I have to.

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