Monday, July 25, 2011

The Sabbath Can Be Painful

Luke Ford writes: I find Sabbaths and holidays painful. They remind me of what’s missing from my life — connection.

During the week, I can distract myself with many endeavors so that I never have to look in the mirror and see my life for what it is — a lonely slog. But on Sabbaths and holidays, life slows down. There’s not much to do. There are no electronic distractions.

When I am feeling good about myself, it is easy for me to put myself out there and to meet people and to connect. When I feel like a loser, I withdraw.

All around me, people are celebrating Passover with their families. But I have created no family. I’m alone. So I latch on to other families but that can bring its own awkwardness. I’m a hanger-on. Or I can go to a community seder at shul with other people who don’t have families, but many of the people there are really weird. As weird as I am. It’s so painful to see them and to realize that they are reflecting back to me my place in the social pecking order.

I don’t want to believe that I am less than, that I have failed at the fundamental task of life — creating a family. 

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