As Kol Nidre was about to begin, I looked at my dining room table: still adorned with a red tablecloth, pomegranates, honey pots and apple figurines to symbolize the richness and sweetness of the new year. As we were transitioning to the holiest night of the year, it didn’t seem fitting to keep Rosh Hashana’s decor on the table. I gathered up the passé holiday “pieces” and put it all away.
I felt both a sense of melancholy and humility as I walked towards the credenza.
Melancholy that another holiday has passed, time continues to rush by, and the hard work, energy and excitement of one chag is already filed in the annals of memory.
Humility that I’m blessed to walk towards the next chag; given the opportunity to have yet another day to serve as a rabbi, mother by children, spend life with my husband and family, assess my mortality and witness the breaking of a new tomorrow.
Melancholy and humility, held in both of my open hands.
Everything is put away…but thank God, there is more to set out in place of the old. A constant cycle of old and new, new and old, my dining room table displaying the course of the Jewish calendar, the stories of my family and the traditions we hold dear.
Hashivenu Adonai eilecha v’nashuva, chadesh yameinu k’kedem. Return us to you, God, so that we shall return, renew our days as of old.
With a little sadness and much grace, may we continue to “set” our tables, with relics of the past building the memories of tomorrow.
A progression of renewing the “old” and making it holy… once again.