Jonah’s first Shabbat

I wish I had time to respond to each and every comment on the last post. Really, you’ve all helped me so much. Even though my readership is small now, I’m so glad I came back to blogging.

Last night was a good night. A few rough, milk came in nursing moments of engorgement pissing off the baby, but we got through it without too much drama. We’ve been home since Friday afternoon. It was a pretty easy arrival–my parents had taken Samuel to the zoo so we had time to unpack and straighten, and Josh even made a really good pesto kale pasta dinner. We had some challah stocked up in the freezer, and I had the best meal I’d had in days.

Hospital food here is even grosser than Michigan. We’re vegetarian, and so I had these options for breakfast lunch, and dinner: peanut butter and jelly, defrosted veggie burger, grilled cheese, or eggs. When I asked my “nutrition consultant” whether the grits side was vegetarian or not, she clearly had no idea what I meant. “Vege-what?” “Do they have any meat products in them?” “Meat what?” Never mind. All my meals arrived–eggs, grilled cheese,–with milk, sour cream, and the label: “Vegan.” Good thing I’m not. All that said, I need to do another post about how for all my worries and whining, I actually really had a great experience with the hospital, and the nurses. Their compassion, concern, and expertise was really beyond what I’d expected.

Anyway, back to my yummy Shabbat dinner.

Even though it might seem nuts to make a dinner the afternoon a baby arrives home, Josh loves to cook and I’ve been dreaming about our first Shabbat home with the boys. It was just my parents and us. Jonah began stirring right as we began kiddush, and I felt a bit frantic. Then as soon as we finished motzi, Samuel announced, “I need to poop” and Jonah began screaming to eat. Finally I was a host, not a guest and a chaotic multi-child Shabbat.  So while it wasn’t ritually perfect, but it was exactly what I needed.

I can’t really convey in words the meaning behind the meal for me–the five candles burning. Long ago in Israel I decided I would burn the typical two candles plus one candle per child like I saw some families doing. I’ll never have, don’t want, the 17 candles I once saw a rebbetzin light, our five are enough. And while I’ll never forget or not feel a pang at the candle for the one who’ll never sit at our table, 2 candles for 2 living children has been such a dream for so long. I still can’t quite believe I’ve finally made it.

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4 responses to “Jonah’s first Shabbat

  1. Congratulations on the release, and the food, and oh, the Shabbat. How lovely.

  2. Oh how beautiful. What a lovely and quietly joyous image, the candles, one for each member of the family. I am so happy for you. Enjoy enjoy! these early milky, chaotic, blessed days.

    (and now I am entering the Silence at my monastery (i have just arrived on retreat), but I saw this and had to say hi)

  3. The image of the 5 candles is really lovely ❤

  4. So glad you got your Jonah and had this first Shabbat. Poignant is the word that comes to mind when reading your post. Thinking of you and your whole family.

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