Tuesday, September 4, 2012

This Too Shall Pass - Vancouver

Today is Thursday – I move out on Friday. This is clearly a bitter sweet moment for me. I am leaving Vancouver for a year – my partner and I will be living in Terrace, BC. As far as I can tell, there are zero Jews in Terrace. Look at it on the map. It’s in the middle of nowhere. I am so excited to be living in a place where nature is an everyday occurrence, not just something you do on the weekend. It will truly be an adventure. But what will life be like without a Jewish Community? I have come to rely on my community in Vancouver, much of which revolves around Moishe House. Last Friday we had a spiritual and magical Kabbalat Shabbat Service. To me it felt the like culmination of years of community building. I am involved in a Jewish Community that is meaningful to me. And to be a leader in this community is such a gift. Not only am I involved in a meaningful local Jewish Community – I am part of the Moishe House Community. I didn’t really ‘get’ Moishe House until the annual retreat in Austin, TX. Here I realized how innovative and revolutionary the Moishe House model is. And here I made some great friends. Little did I know that one of these people would help me get through the toughest experience of my life. Recently – Emly and I spent three days rock climbing in Squamish, BC. The first day we climbed together and then the last two days – Rama, Jade, and Baruch (Moishe House community members) – joined us. It was an awesome time. On the second day we climbed from about 10am until 9pm. On Friday – Emly and I got up early to do a climb called Star Chek. I will spare you all the climbing lingo. But basically, it’s about a 300 foot climb that you break into three sections. At the top of each section you create an anchor and attach yourself to that. It was a beautiful day and the climb was picturesque. I was about halfway up the final section – climbing was a bit tricky here – as I pulled on a hold with my right hand, my shoulder dislocated, and I fell. I knew immediately what had happened. Between my screams, I told Emly that I had dislocated my shoulder. She was able to lower me back to the anchor and I clipped in. I was in the worst pain of my life – and was stuck on the wall with a dislocated shoulder. Thank God I brought my cell phone and we were able to call for help. After about 4 hours of waiting – we were rescued by Squamish Search and Rescue. When I got to the ambulance – I saw Rama and Baruch. And it was so good to see them. Emly and I felt so isolated on the wall – and to see my two good friends was amazing. They all then followed me to the hospital – where I ate the best Subway sandwich of my life. To be in the hospital with my good friends, was actually kind of fun. I was released from the hospital and made it back to Vancouver just in time for Shabbos. To be safe and sound with good friends on Shabbat was such an amazing moment. This too shall pass…

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