Sunday, August 04, 2013

No more chaos

My daughter gave me instructions by phone.

"Please don't look at the video of the wedding and the CD of the photos on Shabbat. OK?"

I sighed and agreed. Shabbat is the day of rest from work, when I can enjoy viewing such stuff that I have no time to get to in the weekday rush.

My youngest daughter had just gotten married in May and disturbed all the secular guests at that wedding who were shocked to find that dancing was going to be separated by gender. Their rabbi had asked them to do so and they were going along with it. They even stopped the music a number of times when men and women started to dance together. Protests were stronger coming from the groom's side, as there were 600 of their guests and there were just a mere 50 guests on our side. Most of our 50 guests were North Americans, and were used to this type of wedding.

We weren't too pissed off at their rabbi who told them not to live with either of their parents, as many young couples do for a year or two so they can save money. It pushed them into being responsible adults for the first time in their lives.

Hubby and I went to her house for a Friday night meal. She had cooked an amazing dinner and seemed so at ease with her new role as wife. This daughter, who was the messiest girl in the Middle East, was now keeping a spotless home. She now has her hair and elbows covered, in accordance with the strictly Orthodox, and this change of lifestyle had me reminiscing on the way back home with Hubby.

"Remember all those times when taxis would honk at 4:00 am years back because she just ran out of the cab without paying?"

"Remember all those all night 'nature trance parties' that went on in secret locations all over Israel that she went to every weekend?"

I had bought new folders to sort out our new home office, made possible by all the girls leaving home and leaving us with a spare room.

As I rummaged through her files, I came across letters from the courts, lawyers' bills - from 2002 to 2007 -when her hobbies were shoplifting, stealing charity boxes, trying to get into Teddy Stadium with a knife, painting graffiti on public buildings and simply passing a joint to her friend which resulted in 120 hours of community service. We had our hands full with that girl. It had seemed like 24/7 chaos in our lives. It was frightening not knowing which way she was gonna go in life.

I remember my boss telling me not to worry, during those awful years. That she would give me the most "nachas" (pleasure/pride) one day. And he must have been a prophet to foresee that, because I couldn't. And for once, though I am not a fan of rabbis, I am grateful to the influence this particular rabbi has on her and her new husband. I don't give a shit if he wants her to wear a burka. Funnily enough, I'd be all for it.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I can tell you - I was messy as a kid and now as an adult with my own house, nothing's improved: you have to walk like a crab to move around. So, it is a miracle your daughter transformed into a neantik. Might have to become Orthodox!