Saturday, August 17, 2013

#blogElul 11: count

When I saw that the topic for day 11 was "count," I knew I had written a post about this topic before. In fact, I've written a couple. One about how Jews like to count. And we do, we really really like it.

Then I remembered another post, which I wrote during this year's Omer period. I talked about the different type of counting in which my family is engaged, the counting of white blood cells and neutrophils and ounces of water and days in the hospital.

Tomorrow begins Sam's bone marrow transplant process. Tomorrow we start a whole new kind of counting. Days until transplant. Days post-transplant. Those numbers will again consume and become our whole lives. Platelet and hemoglobin counts. And new numbers, ones that we've never seen before. Kidney levels, cyclosporine levels, and chimerism numbers. Plus about a billion more numbers...that we have to count.

As a mom of four kids, I'm always counting heads and making sure that I've got everyone. As Sam prepares to go into the hospital, I'm going to be counting heads in a different way. One-two-three...and Sam in the hospital. I am filled with fear that someday my counting will change. I know parents who are counting so very differently...but I try not to think about it. I try not to imagine what it's like to count a different way, a different number, I try not to imagine the pain of that accounting.

It's Elul. It's the time to think big and deep and scary thoughts.

Instead, I'm hoping to be distracted by the numbers. I'm hoping that the actions of counting will consume my time and my mind and let me sink into the depths of the details. I'm hoping that the small actions and details will help us to get where we need to go -- with our mind on the goal, a bright and light-filled future.

I'm counting on it.

The Jewish month of Elul, which precedes the High Holy Days, is traditionally a time of renewal and reflection. It offers a chance for spiritual preparation for the Days of Awe. It is traditional to begin one’s preparation for the High Holy Days during this month with the Selichot, the prayers of forgiveness. We look to begin the year with a clean slate, starting anew, refreshed. All month, along with others, I'll be blogging a thought or two for each day to help with the month of preparation... I will be blogging here, and sharing #Elulgram photos on the same themes at Follow me on twitter @imabima for all the #BlogElul posts, not only mine but others' as well! This year, I'm not doing a linky or anything like that -- I'm conserving energy! So be sure to tag your posts on Twitter and Facebook so I can catch them with my alerts....

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