Thursday, April 5, 2007

Sorting things out....

I know, I know. Everybody out there is pretty pissed off at me for not posting in a long time, but the truth is, I've been very busy.
Truth be told, over the past few weeks, I've been thinking. A lot. About a large number of things.
You see, I recently celebrated my twenty first birthday, and although it wasn't the catalyst for my thinking about these things, it definitely intensified my introspection. I think about things a lot, not that I'm self obsessed or anything, but I do tend to mull over things and allow them to drive me crazy. Anyway, as is my custom when I reach my birthday, I do a little asessment, and I try to see where I'm holding in regard to the previous year. In any event, I came to the realization of a few things. First of all, as happy as I am in the Holy Land (and I am very happy), I realize that I am nowhere near the same level of happiness that I was at back in yeshiva in New Jersey. Of course, this doesn't necessarily mean that I'd be happier if I was back there; that was then, and this is now. Still, I miss every aspect of my old yeshiva; the camaraderie, the family like atmosphere, and most of all, the close relationships that I had with the various rebbeim there. In a place like the Mir, I'm a small fish in a massive pond, and it's very hard to make a connection with anybody there. Naturally, I have tried to establish a rapport with my rebbe, but it only goes so far. Also, the guys are different. I know, you're thinking that there are a lot of guys there, but still, it's a different setting. That's one problem.
Another problem: since I arrived here, I've had numerous people approach me in terms of shidduchim. At first, I told them to leave me alone; I'm here to learn, and that's that. However, I have come to realize that a) it has become a larger topic in my mind, and b) all honesty, I am a little tired of the chaotic structure, or lack thereof, of the yeshiva student. I'm not talking about the sedarim; in that, there's plenty of structure. But, I am tired of bein hasedarim. The whole package, which includes deciding where and what I'm going to eat every meal. So, in a sense, I am ready to settle down a little. Not that I ever thought I'd be saying such a thing so soon. Me, the guy who pounded his chest when he heard about friends gettng married, and said "what? And give up bachelorhood? Never!" Of course, that's not to say that I am ready yet, but I am thinking about it. A lot.
Third, and this problem really unsettles me: Truthfully, I can't say I enjoy learning. It's a good thing, it's the right thing, and I'm earning a lot of points for it. And I do it; I have very good shmiras hasedarim, not that I'm patting myself on the back. And when I'm in the thick of a gemara, trying to untagle some sort of conceptual knot, I do feel something out of it. But, I think the reason I'm not enjoying it fully, is because I don't see anything coming from it. I know that it sharpens my intellectual skills, and I'm positive that I get some sort of spiritual benefit, a closer connection to God, but I don't feel like it helps me with practical purposes. This disturbs me greatly.
Fourth: Getting back to marriage issues, this little concern gnaws at me constantly. Because of who and what I am, I know that I will need a very special girl. One who can relate to me, and understand and appreciate who I was, who I am, and who I want to be. I have no doubt that God will guide us to meet each other, but I am worried, scared even, that my parents won't accept her. And I hope and pray that if it came to it, God forbid, I would have the backbone to tell my parents to go fly a kite, if I felt that it was the best thing for me.
So, I've been thinking about this for quite some time, examining my options. When I tried to go over the options with my parents, the completely flipped out. I don't know why, but they completely missed the boat, and took what I was saying the wrong way. Now, they think that I'm going off the derech or something along those lines. We had a serious fight over the phone once they were back in America, and I learned since then that I don't have to speak with them about everything. I know, I should have known, right?
In any event, for the meantime, I've been setting up various learning partners for other, wider ranging subjects, in order to broaden my horizons in torah. Who knows? Maybe that's what I need to find more satisfaction in what I'm currently learning.....
As for marriage, the thoughts haven't gone away, but I have told them to go into the backroom. They're still there, but they know to wait a little while longer.....
By the way, before I close off, I'd like to mention that I met three very special people the other night. I only knew them through other people, but they also happen to read my blog, and it was really nice to meet them. I enjoyed myself, and their feedback and compliments were great.
Peace out, people!
Originally posted Sunday, 29 January 2006

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