Running the Marathon of life


Eitan Davis: one of three organ donors this weekend (picture courtesy of his family)

While I was busy running the 10K in the Jerusalem marathon this Friday and feeling utterly invinceable, 11 people were running the marathon of life when they received notice that they would be getting the organ donations they were so eagerly waiting for,  as Airel Noy put it so wisely in his online article on Walla:

The list of organs is extensive and were all given selflessly by three families in order to give 11 people a chance to live. Two of the donors and a third by the name of Eitan Davis died over the weekend due to unforeseen circumstances and their families helped donate their loved one’s organs so that others could go on living. The organ recipients ranging in age from 6-59 years old were given a new lease on life so that they can continue to love and be loved. The donors will continue their legacy in this world even upon their passing.

 I cannot stress enough how important I feel this move is in our country where we can help others to live. Let’s renew our lease on life and be proactive.

I am filling out my card here:

I hope you will too. Once you have submitted it you will get a card in the mail that you should proceed to carry on you always.

Watch this video, it is very moving all about religious families who have chosen life even when facing death:


A dog, a jog and a blog

Jogging with dogs

Jogging, blogging and dodging dogs.

Old Navy yoga pants, 50 cent on my MP3 and a bounce in my step…I decided to go for a jog. I regularly jog but this time it would be different. This time I would not complete my route because as I rounded the first corner I saw a dog. It was a mid sized dog on a leash being walked by an older man. I tensed up since it was a narrow alley-way and the dog seemed very excited: jumping and yapping. I stopped and stood on the side waiting for the dog, and its owner, to pass.

Now this is where things got messy.

The dog owner didn’t tighten the leash, the dog started growling and the owner seemed oblivious to the whole thing.  All of a sudden the dog jumped on me and sunk his incisors right into my leg, they went through my pants and right into my calf. I screamed! And once I started screaming I couldn’t stop!

Your freaking dog just bit my leg!!! He bit my leg! I am going to get #*@$^ rabies you $#@#%&^%!!! I have five children!! I am their main caregiver!! I can’t afford to be laid up because of your $%#$%$%^ dog!!!

I realized that I was yelling, as psychotic as I may have seemed. The owner was staring at me blankly and finally when he responded he started to sign to me. This was too much!!! The person walking the dog was deaf! He never heard the dog growling and, even though I couldn’t stop screaming at no one in particular, couldn’t hear me either.

I called the ambulance to treat my leg. The police came and asked if I wanted to file a complaint. They were all wonderful and although I still have teeth marks in my leg and the remnants of the bruise on my leg from the strength of the dog clamping on….I am now on the mend.

I had to miss work for a few days. I was forced to limp around. I needed to rent a car to transport my sorry ass around and my Old Navy yoga pants have four holes in them now from the dog’s teeth. Luckily the dog had all it’s shots so I only needed to get a tetanus shot (which btw, considering my hypochondria, made me think that I had lockjaw).

Now when I see a dog coming towards me I tense up which is not good for a runner like me because I am so often accompanied on my run by canines who like to be my partner for a few kilometers. I had to deal with the trauma of my children who were worried that I would be okay because they have seen me injured before and it rocked the foundation of their security.

So what’s my point?

  1. Train your freaking dogs properly!!!
  2. Pick up after their poop!
  3. Don’t walk aggressive dogs in residential neighborhoods!
  4. Buy me a new pair of yoga pants (size small)
  5. Don’t let anything stop you from running.

Returning to the basics of Purim

Mishloach Manot

Mishloach Ma-NOT!!!!!

No one needs to impress me, dazzle me, think of me or spend time with me. I am a woman and I am alone.

This really hit home for me this week when I received 1 Mishloach Manot (kudos Last family). Truthfully, I hate the waste that comes with Purim and I dislike the high-school level popularity contest that it represents. When i used to be in the state of coupledom I would receive so many Mishloach Manot that our table was filled to overflowing. And yet, I am content with my status quo.

I came to the realization that i have good friends who may not live close to where I live but are always there for me, I have family whom I love and kids who are the best company.  We had a good time with costumes and delivering Mishloach Manot to the kid’s friends. I felt relieved to make it through Purim without too much financial or emotional strain and my parents shared my seudah with me. I have returned to the basics of Purim.

Now who else can say the same?

Gone with the wind friendships

Dog and cat friends

Friends through it all

When getting divorced, especially in a family oriented community, I have found that many of the people who I thought were friends and couples who I enjoyed many wonderful times with became distant memories. If I may be so bold as to create a comparison: Life is like an outfit; sometimes it flatters you and sometimes it fits, it sometimes needs changing, and sometimes it just makes you fat. Life has accessories too such as friends, homes, cars and a partner. When you change your life “outfit” many tmes your “accessories” need adjusting too. (Please don’t take this literally…it is purely for the sake of literary license).

In some ways the separation comes with a twinge of remorse: the couple who always served the best food, had the greatest views, the most engaging conversations and the best toys for the kids to play with. Other times it comes with an overwhelming feeling of relief. You no longer have to put up with that annoying wife of your husband’s friend who you never have anything to say to or made annoying jokes at someone’s expense.

Let’s just look at our work friends for a minute, our colleagues. When you switch jobs and forlornly say goodbye, you know that these people who you spent every day with for the past few years will most likely drop off the end of your life, never be seen again. It doesn’t necessarily reflect badly on them or on you for that matter even if you both keep saying, “Let’s keep in touch, ok”? For obvious reasons, in people’s fast paced lifestyles proximity does make for an easier friendship and since you never had to make an effort to see each other before what makes you think you would start now?

Are there any specific traits or behaviors that lead to long term friendships?

It reminds me of a book I once read about ordinary everyday people who became heroes due to a heroic act that they did spontaneously. They couldn’t explain what motivated them to act on the spur of the moment. There really was no defining trait for heroic behaviour.  All that they could be sure of was that they were presented with a situation where they just knew that they had to act. What the author wrote in the forward to this book was that we are always so fascinated with what motivates the serial killer or someone who stands on a tower and shoots tens of people or who kidnaps someone and mutilates them and yet we are never fascinated by the reverse scenario: What motivates an ordinary person to act altruistically or heroically?

During my divorce proceedings many of the couples whom I thought to be close seem to have just become part of the unwritten divorce settlement. The reverse is true as well. I have been pleasantly surprised to find myself spending time with people and couples who I never would have in my previous coupled life. I enjoy their company and that’s all there is too it. They are kind and giving and we love to laugh together.

If you are looking for answers as to which friends will move to the other side and which will just fall through the cracks never to be seen or heard from again, I don’t have any. But let me just say that when you are single for the second time around you learn very quickly who your real friends are. You are wearing a new outfit and only you and you alone will decide which accessories look best on you.

And just remember darling: You look fabulous!