TBT: A Marriage in Heaven

Lately I’ve been using Thursdays as a way to remember special moments with my fiance in our journey together toward marriage and the relationship we’ll be able to build on the other side of our immigration journey.

But tonight there’s another couple I want to remember.

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Honest Applications

I was once told the best way to lose your job is to lie on your resume, so this weekend at the Teach for America 25th Anniversary Summit, when people asked why I chose to join the Milwaukee 2016 Corps, I couldn’t do anything but tell them the truth.

And the trust is that I didn’t choose Milwaukee at all.

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TBT: Sacred Space

They say that home is where the heart is, but it’s an empty saying without articulating what we mean when we say the heart. Is it the space where our bodies physically rest, or the space we feel most embraced, or is it something less tangible, more spiritual?

The synagogue pictured above is the oldest in Mexico, literally known as the Historic Synagogue. We went to visit it our first day together, but it was closed, so we went back the next day. We went upstairs and ogled at a temporary exhibit from the Palafoxiana Library (the oldest library in North America), and we were amazed by the stunning architecture, how small and perhaps insignificant I felt inside this place.

But also how expansive, how endless, how holy.

Outside these doors, after signing the guest book, we walked away wondering what we’d write if we were married, one last name, or two? Hyphenated, his first, or mine?

It was inside these doors, five months later, when we exchanged engagement rings.

I don’t always know where home is–or if there’s only one. Home is with my family, and in Raleigh, and in Hoonah and Punta Gorda and San Francisco and in Mexico, in the guest house where we spent our first night together, in Queretaro where we bought our rings, in Puebla where we kissed inside a volcano, in Mexico City where we met and embraced and kissed for the first time.

Home is in each of these places, because in each of them, my heart grew.

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My Year of Recreation

By which I mean, re-creation.

I realized recently that I’ve allowed myself to stagnate. I felt somehow I had finished developing as a person–I knew I would never stop growing, but I assumed there were things I had figured out, things that were finally fixed.

Like perhaps I’m a paint by numbers, and while there were still a lot of spaces waiting to be filled in, I had the core of the picture complete. I knew who I was.

That is, at least, until I didn’t.

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TBT: Sweater Weather

Sometimes I laugh when friends of mine, who live with their partners, remark how annoying it is and then tell me to “Just wait till you live together.”

As if I haven’t been waiting for over two years, right?

The longest continuous period of time Harel and I had together was three weeks in December 2015. It was my third visit to Mexico City, and it was the first visit we didn’t fill with adventures around the city, to museums and churches and any place.

Instead we lived together. We woke up next to each other, we went grocery shopping, we cooked for each other, we visited friends, we drank, ate, were merry. The way he puts his computer on the kitchen table and plays music while he cooks. The way he doesn’t walk around the house without anything on his feet.

Little things. The things that annoy other people. The things I cherish.

One day it was colder than expected, and we needed to dress up a bit, and the only sweater I had was a purple hoodie–I love it, but it didn’t suit the occasion. So Harel pulled all his sweaters out of the closet and had me try on each of them.

I remember saying the cardigan looked particularly feminine on my figure.

Then yesterday a couple new sweaters I ordered online arrived (I’m not naturally a sweater person, mind you, but being that I’ll be teaching in Milwaukee, where it’s much colder than it is in NC, and being that sweaters can be worn casually and professionally, it seems a fashion sense I should acquire), and as I buttoned up the smokey grey cardigan, I couldn’t help but feel the moment was incomplete without Harel with me.

Most days I scramble out of bed and get dressed in such a hurry, I’m lucky if I put my foot through the right pant leg on my first try. Getting dressed is routine, the necessary machinery to prepare myself for a professional day.

But with Harel, even getting dressed was something special.

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(To give some context to our expressions in the picture–in which I’m wearing Harel’s sweater–it was taken right after we found out his parents were visiting. That is, when we found out we were all meeting for the first time.)

TBT: Subway Robbery

 

All times aren’t good times.

Heading into the subway at the start of our day, I was pickpocketed and we lost all the money we had on us, with barely enough to get back home.

All our plans were ruined, and I had to worry about ID theft the day before Christmas.

We were angry, frustrated, stressed, and pissed off. But we were together. So we allowed ourselves time to vent, to let it out of us, and then we walked around the city, stopping at places where we could explore without paying–like walking through an antique bookstore, a Judaica shop, and an art gallery.

Shitty things happened, and they always will, but we made it through.

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Throwback Thursday

The year began with promise: We’d have our visa interview and then my fiance would fly up to the US and we’d be married.

Instead we found a clerical error on his passport, and the whole process came to a grinding (albeit temporary) halt.

So in the mean time, it’s my goal to dedicate every Thursday of this year until we have our visa interview to looking back at some of the moments he and I have shared.

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Hypocrisy on High

Just yesterday I renounced New Year’s resolutions and goal-making in general, but it’s been shown that creating New Year’s goals is a great start to achieving them (and not setting goals is a surefire way to miss the mark entirely). I’m still sticking to my systems, but there are a number of outcomes I’m aiming at in 2016.

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Goodbye Goals

New Year’s approaches and with it comes the end of another year–and the final verdict on the New Year’s resolutions we all made twelve months ago. Was this year a success, or will it be enshrined in failure forever?

I’ve written a lot about New Year’s resolutions and goal-setting in the six years I’ve been blogging, but this year, I’m telling my goals goodbye–and here’s why.

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