With the end of our Jewish year fast approaching, I find it a great time for reflection, along with thoughts for the future. For me, this past year reinforced the importance of family and friends.
Laughing, learning, growing and sharing good times with those close to me — in the same physical space — has been critical for my own wellbeing, and I’m so grateful that I was able to bring those joys back into my life. Sure, Zoom and Facetime helped bridge the divide, but for me, there’s nothing like a real hug!
Our world, and lives, are always full of “knocks” — and this year was no different. Internal and external struggles, whether they are economic, social, political, etc., they were always present — and those struggles rear their ugly heads often. With so much being thrown at us, it’s sometimes a struggle to “drive on.” We make mistakes — and sometimes we think of ourselves as failures.
At the same time, I am reminded of what Victor Frankl famously wrote: “The last of human freedoms is to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.” This year, I will certainly take those words to heart, and remind myself that it’s my responsibility to be the best I can be.
In this coming New Year, I pray that we may live up to the commission of the People of Israel, which is to be a light unto the nations. May it be a year where we will pass on goodness, peace and reconciliation to whomever we will meet. May we each find that spark, which, when unleashed on the world, brings hope and happiness to others.
And may it be one of health and happiness, and sweet moments for you and your families. Shana Tova!
Cheryl Dorchinsky is founding executive director of Atlanta Israel Coalition and director of community engagement for #EndJewHatred movement.