This piece is a continuation of “Happenings, Hearts and The Future – Part 3“.
Part 4 – An Undecided Future
Yair and I met up a couple of weeks ago to tend to some logistics and take the RV for a spin. We got to talking about our futures, and Yair shared with me (and gave me permission to share with you) that he and his significant other will likely be moving to a small town in the middle of California’s national forest by this time next year.
My reaction to this news was mixed. At first it hit me hard that Yair’s life seemed so ordered and set, and that he so quickly moved on and knows what his next steps are when my future is framed by question marks, all bright and happy opportunities, but question marks nonetheless. But as I gave myself time to sit with this news, it became comforting in that it affirmed our different visions for the future.
Yair will be satisfied if not thrilled with reading and juggling in a small cabin in the forest day after day, and perhaps picking up a local construction job on the side for kicks. I, on the other hand, would not even remotely enjoy being geographically isolated from family, Jewish community, city life and the projects that I so yearn to create and devote my passion to. A week in the woods, a month in the woods? Sure thing. I’m a nature gal, no question. But not a lifetime. And in that way, perhaps it is good that we have both been freed to honor our natures and needs.
So, my future? It involves Austin and Jerusalem. I will likely head to Jerusalem for an extended visit this July… where I have been offered a job. It’s a good job that would allow me to jump into impactful social justice work in Israel and split my time between Jerusalem and the United States. The organization has been courting me, and the director personally called me today to wish me a good Passover. That someone is chasing me with a paying position at an organization where I hoped to volunteer feels divinely ordained. Yet despite this, I am not ready to give up Jewrotica, to sit in front of a computer in an office, to work for someone else. I want to do impactful work, but not at the expense of my freedom and quality of life, and so I feel conflicted. Very conflicted.
When discussing this dilemma with my housemate Gianna, she sagely advised me to stop dichotomizing Austin and Jerusalem into “fun but not meaningful” (Austin) and “meaningful but not fun” (Jerusalem). She’s right, but I’m still trying to find the right balance.
Life goes by quickly and I wish I could let each of you in more deeply on the stories of my current life. You would laugh. I sure do.
I’ll be speaking in Chicago this April, in New York this May, in Ohio this June (where I am the keynote for a multi-million dollar fundraiser, holy sh**!) and then I will be taking the RV on a rural Jewish outreach tour before heading to Israel at the end of the summer. If you’ve managed to read through this mammoth of a post and are seeing this closing bit, hit me up if you are in one of the locations above and I am coming to your ‘hood.
Wishing each of you an eed mubarak (for the Persian New Year tonight), a beautiful Passover, a happy Easter and a glorious Spring!
posted by ayo