Remember Me

First, let me say thank you to all of our fans and readers. You have been very patient with this blog and us since its conception. From Cats, Chats & Fiber to Coffee, Cats n’ Yarn to our present incarnation, you have stayed to read this indulgence, and we appreciate it deeply. As long as I (CHo) can write and spend time with my naked kidz, this blog will continue. Thanks for coming back.

Yahrzeit



Today is May 4th, 2015. By our ACE calendar (After the Common Era) it was one year ago that we lost our beloved Maus. As it is with Jewish tradition, we lit candles for her, recited prayers and remembered our little girl. We lit our candle on April 23rd, 2015, Maus’s Yahrzeit date. Yahrzeit is a Yiddish word that translates to “anniversary time,” which always confused me since I've never heard the word used in any other context other than death as opposed to births or weddings. I’m not a big Yiddish speaker, but since most of the Jewish community in this area comes from a European tradition (Russian, Polish, German, French), Yiddish is a common vernacular when sighting Jewish tradition. In the Jewish tradition, we light a special kind of candle, made to burn a specific amount of time to mark the anniversary of a loved ones’ death. The reason why we burned candles on April 23rd rather than today has to do with the Jewish calendar. Our present day calendars follow the revolutions of the Earth around our Sun. The Jewish calendar is Lunar. A lunar calendar is cycles of the lunar phases. Both calendars are roughly 12 months but don’t line up in days of the year. People will ask me what the 4th of May is in Hebrew, and I say “the 4th of May”. After the confused looks I just tell people don’t think about it that hard and just know that the calendars are different. Maus died on the 4th of Iyar of the year 5774. Last year that date fell on the 4th of May, this year it fell on the 23rd of April. Next year it will fall on the 12th of May.

Yizkor (in the Hebrew means “May G*d remember) is a memorial service. Prayers for the departed recited. Both the Yahrzeit and the Yizkor are instruments in a way where you take a day to remember how special this soul was to you in your life and the community as a whole supports and stands with yo in your grief.  In the Jewish tradition, we don’t pray for our pets during Yizkor and though I respect my traditions I needed to create a ritual for my grief. I create private time in which I can just sit back and remember her. I light my candle, take out pictures, watch videos and thank G*d I had the opportunity to have her in my life (Baruch Ata Adonai, Elo hey nu melekh ha'olam, shekakhah lo ba'olamo - Blessed are you G*d, Ruler of the Universe who has such as these in the world). I finally ordered the ceramic urn for her cremains (another tradition, to place the headstone a year after the death on Yahrzeit or 1st Yizkor after Yahrzeit) which I will speak about when it arrives. For now, I will just sit; cry a little, laugh a little and remember.

Maus, I remember you.




3 comments:

  1. I Miss You Maus, My Minky Paka. Forever I will cherish the unconditional Love and Joy you gave me. Ok, well there were some conditions...the insistence that I leave the bathroom light on for warmth, or parking yourself squarely on my computer "Maus" pad to pay attention to you, and by all means climbing into my arm for a comfortable resting spot as you enjoyed the warmth of my arm and your "cable for cats" out of the balcony window, forcing me into one-handed typing on my computer. 8-). And lest I forget, your "bark" to remind me of my responsibilities towards your comfort! Conditions I would Love to enjoy over and over. Mungu Awabariki Mimi Maus. I Love You.

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  2. i can't believe it has been a year. Sweet girl. Xoxo

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  3. Maus was a cutie. I wish I had been reading blogs back when you wrote about her. Thank you for explaining this beautiful tradition of remembering those that have passed and explaining why the dates change.

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