A Month of Celebration

It has been a month of simchas and other life cycle events, thank God, mostly happy celebrations.
There have been several B’nai Mitzvah ceremonies. I love working with the families if the parents are open to it. Of course teaching the children are my top priority. It is interesting the difference in learning from child to child keeps me on my toes. From special needs to mainstreamed, using different teaching methods keeps me on my toes. Needing to keep the students on their toes also keeps me on my toes. My student last week who had his ceremony was unbelievable. He read all three readings for his afternoon ceremony. He prepared all readings by applying the Torah trope and did not use a polishing tape for the most part! Only the very last verse of his readings did his brain finally give out (so to speak). So, I told him to cut himself a break and he took the recording. He is one of three students in my 25 year career that has prepared without a recording. Most of my students do apply trope, but always use a polishing recording. My special needs student last month prepared by repetition, repetition, repetition. He did learn how to read Hebrew. His family was very encouraging and worked with him a lot at home which was of great assistance and helped him with his confidence level for his ceremony. He helped lead the service, projected which was tough to get him to do during rehearsals and even enjoyed himself. My student last night did wonderful as well. It was a difficult journey because he was in a difficult family situation. But, he did it! And, he did very well! He actually seemed like he was enjoying himself!
Ron and I were invited to the receptions for a couple of them. I do accept if there is a relationship with the family and especially if the student really wants me to be there. Watching and feeling the family dynamics is very interesting. Last nights ceremony was absolutely a delight because the family is knowledgeable and hearing all the family and guests singing with my student and I was a real treat! The whole service was full of community, prayer, love, and some laughter. Such a joy! This family started doing something that I would like to implement when our grandchildren start having their ceremonies this February. They are passing a 200 year old family bible from Bar/Bat Mitzvah to Bar/Bat Mitzvah. It was such a touching part of the ceremony that I had chills and tears in my eyes. The party was awesome, not because of the food, the decorations, or the DJ, but you can feel the love and closeness of the family. The same with my student in May. I cannot tell you how important this is. Children from families like this will have an easier time in this crazy world.
Unfortunately, in between all the simchas, one of my families had a tragedy. A Mother of two (young adults) had a scuba diving accident and did not come out of it. She ended up in a coma. When I visited her in hospice, I did a lot of talking and, of course, thought about if she can hear me. I believe it is natural to wonder if a person who is in a coma can hear one talking. So we talk. She unfortunately passed away and I conducted the memorial service where we celebrated her life. So many people came in such short notice. The love and support shown to these two children was beautiful to watch and necessary. They have had a rough journey off and on for several years including loosing their Father four years ago. I am glad I can be there for them again.
Part of life: simchas (joyful celebrations) and sad occasions, all a part of life.
The simchas was continue through the summer. Lots of birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, etc. Let’s keep celebrating life!
Shavua tov

About cantorrisa

I am a Cantor, Judaic Studies, and music teacher. I enjoy sharing my knowledge, and help people from young to old love being Jewish. I teach and sing in several synagogues and schools in the area. I officiate all life cycle events and teach students, children and adults, privately for their b'nai mitzvah ceremonies. I also enjoy studying Bible with all faiths either individually or in small groups (chevruta). I conduct Shabbat and High Holiday Services at K'hilat Bayt Shira and Senior Communities in the area. In my spare time, I teach key board and guitar. I am married to a wonderful man, have two children and six grandchildren. My hobbies are writing, playing and listening to music, learning, reading, crocheting and knitting.
This entry was posted in All In A Day, B'nai Mitzvah, Music, Shabbat, synagogue, Teaching, Teaching music. Bookmark the permalink.

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