We are sorry to hear that you are having a hard time. This year has been a difficult one, with so many
mahapeichot- shake ups occurring in our lives. So many things which we previously took for granted are no longer present.
We begin to wonder, “what will be with me and my future?” When the foundations are shaken, it upsets the balance of our lives.
You had assumed, “If I follow the game plan, then I’ll get what I want. Daven, go on extra dates, take on extra mitzvot, work on yourself, then I will bend Hashem’s will to mine.” Emuna means accepting He has a plan for me, which can contradict my plans. Emuna means living in Hashem’s world, not trying to make it into mine. It means accepting His will, despite that fact that you don’t understand it. When we say Shema daily, we are saying, “Hashem I accept that You run the world.” I let go over my rulership of the world, and ask “What is the role that You have for me?”
We feel it would be best for you to practice radical acceptance. Fighting reality only intensifies our emotional reaction. We might fight reality by judging a situation. We might fight reality by saying “It should or shouldn’t be this way,” “That’s not fair!” or “Why me?!” Fighting reality only creates suffering. While pain is inevitable in life, suffering is optional.
Can you take each part of your life, gently item by item, and mindfully accept it into your life?
Marsha Linehan (Creator of DBT one form of Cognitive Behavioral Psychology) notes that acceptance of reality requires an act of CHOICE. It is like coming to a fork in the road. You have to turn your mind towards the acceptance road and away from the rejecting reality road.
You have to make an inner COMMITMENT to accept. The commitment to accept does not itself equal acceptance. It just turns you toward the path. But it is the first step.
You have to turn your mind and commit to acceptance OVER AND OVER AND OVER again. Sometimes, you have to make the commitment many times in the space of a few minutes.
Can you accept that Hashem is giving you the life that you need, not necessarily the one of your choosing? Can you open your mind, as you have begun to, toward the role that you are playing currently, and the enjoyment that you are having from all of the other parts to your life. We know this is difficult and this is something that everyone struggles with at different points of their lives.
When you start to think about how you’d like to be a wife and mother, note the thoughts and feelings. Daven for it. Then don’t dwell on it. Dwelling on it will only bring you to self-pity, and sadness. Gently redirect your mind to your task at hand, the things you are grateful for, or the different role that Hashem has for you.
No one can promise you what the future holds. This uncertainty causes anxiety for everyone. In these moments, we must remember that sometimes we will feel overwhelmed. Normally, structure has a calming affect on us. When we feel that we’re out of bounds, we can feel out of control. Listen for the sound of the new path Hashem is taking you down. What do you hear Him saying to you? What opportunities are you being presented with?
Don’t believe that you are “a statistic.” Each person is a letter in the sefer torah, without which it is pasul. There is no “just another letter.” We make a bracha on seeing 600,000 people, “Baruch… Chacham Harazim, Blessed are You, the Master of secrets.” This is because human nature is to lose the holy individuality of each person when they become a crowd. Hashem knows there is holy secret about which makes each one unique and special. You have your own destiny and purpose. Hashem has not written you off. Please don’t write yourself either.
Continue to accept shidduch offers, contact shadchanim and attend events. Look for new and different opportunities that Hashem is providing you. We have been hearing that zoom/speed dating has opened new avenues for people to meet, works for some people better than a regular speed dating event, and there have been some successful shidduchim from there.
Please feel free to reach out to us Rabbireuvenandshira@gmail.com for more advice or direction.
Rabbi Reuven and Shira Boshnack