This evening begins the holiest days of the year for the Jewish people-- the start of the Jewish New Year. It's a beautiful holiday; a period of reflection and introspection. It's a time to look back at the past year and seek forgiveness from those you have wronged.
I am certain that most struggle with their first holiday without a loved one. This is the first holiday I'll be celebrating without my mom. Mom always arrived at the synagogue hours early to sit in solitude, and of course, get a good seat. She loved listening to the beautiful music and chanting of the Cantor. When I was young I used to get angry having to go to temple that early, but now I think I understand.
It's surreal thinking back on the memories of our entire family sitting around the table reigning in the New Year with the traditional foods such as apples and honey, symbolizing a sweet year. One by one, they've all passed on, and now the holiday will never feel quite the same. So on this bittersweet Rosh Hashanah I will reflect on the past, holding its memories near and dear, looking to the future with hope.
So my friends, to all who celebrate, wishing you and your families a sweet year full of health, happiness, and peace. Shana Tova!