Friday, August 6, 2010

love's Delima

My conversion, My marriage, My kosher kitchen, My choices. All have been full of deep contemplation. I can say with a clear mind and heart that I have chosen for myself this new life. But there is someone who has not made any of those choices and yet now, even more acutely than ever before, has to live with them.

My daughter, who had been living in an apartment with her long time boyfriend, has come to live with my husband and I, with the boyfriend in tow. College is completed and employment with enough pay to continue living in New York City has been difficult to secure, so here they are!

I love my daughter, but this is hard. She has accepted my husband of two and a half years. She supports my career changes. (I now work for myself as apposed to my previous management job at a large psychiatric hospital) but the "Jewish Stuff", her words, has been much more difficult. She tells me that she sees that I am happy but then says "I just don't see the purpose of this kosher stuff." I explain it is what I do and that it is important to me. But this is the moment that keeps on giving.

The kitchen is the epicenter or in other words, ground zero of this new challenge. My kosher kitchen has been a difficult thing for me to conquer! It has been a work in progress with my determination to climb the ladder of observance. Each step of the ladder involves so much learning, practice and patients with myself and others.

But now the invasion has occurred. I did an initial overview and this was accepted. "Ok these dishes, this cabinet these bowls etc...dairy" and so on. But trying to explain that dairy is more than just a bowl of cereal with milk is much harder.

The separation problem is much bigger. I was in another room and I heard my daughter and the boyfriend talking...I think I hear "cheese burger"...but the moment passes and they decide on something else. I make a mental note talk to them about mixing meat and dairy....

I love my daughter and want her to be comfortable in this her new home even if it is temporary situation. This is a struggle for all of us and I know this will be one of the most difficult challenges I have faced since my choice to convert.


Chaviva said...

It's so tough. I recently visited my little brother in South Carolina and he allowed me to explain some of kashrut and make them dinner (which went over well with throw-away pans and me schlepping kosher meat and stuff down with me, hah). But this is one of the hardest things.

Food, for all of us, is such a meeting ground for conversation, family, everything.

Dunking Rachel said... is a major point... a funny thing happened on Saturday daughter a few days befor asked if she could entertain on
Saturday...the only thing I asked if she could have the start time affter Havdala then we could get out of her way...she my husband I got lost for about as long as our old selves could take it....we came home around 12:30 and the party is going strong...

all excited when we came in my daughter and one of her very best friends run up to us and say you must have icecream cake!

they bring the box to me...and pointed out it was kosher...and I notices they were using plastic plates and the right (read dairy) spoons....yea!

so I learned....nice moment!

Devorah said...

Wow, that must be really difficult for you.

Hope your daughter appreciates what a special mother she has!

Dunking Rachel said...


thank you... it is an act of love in all directions. Love for my daughter and love my chosen faith. Yet anyone who has lived their life knows that love at times takes much work...

In one way I try to remember I am lucky to have this time with,through my actions, show her the care she needs and the devotion I have to growing my faith on the other....

Devorah said...

All I can say is...WOW!

Dunking Rachael

Love, Faith and Life