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The Great Part of the Seder!

April 8, 2010
Ok, first and foremost, for the first time in history…. nobody spilled anything purple on my grandmother’s tablecloth! That is a passover miracle. We had a wonderful seder. It was a very mixed bag. The last few years my son has been somewhat disengaged from Temple life and not paying much mind to the Seder or any other ritual. This year it was clear to me that he understood the significance of the ritual in some new and more mature way.  This was evidenced by a subtle shift in attitude and behavior that mostly a mom would notice.  I can barely get him to put napkins on the table normally but on that afternoon he willing laid out two forks, two spoons and a knife along with two glasses and a linen napkin at every place.  As I was counting plates and trying to determine which way around to do things ~ have to put drops of plague wine on the plate, eat the charoset and maror with matzoh  but then need a plate for gefilte fish, salad and then main course.  Which do I wash and when.  My son says “mom… use the dessert plates, wash them after dinner”.  Duh!  But the idea that he remembered and understood what had to happen was stunning to me.  He said “mom… let me sit by you so I can help clear and serve.”  Who kidnapped my REAL son?  Another passover miracle.  I guess he is just growing up.  Another miracle?  Every year, because of timing issues, ritual issues, whatever, there is always one part of the dinner that really doesn’t come out as I would like; I pride myself on my dinners, my food.  This year… everything was perfect (if I do say so myself).  Yet another passover miracle!  And my son was attentive to the story (mostly).  The greatest miracle of all.  No matter how disaffected he seems, no matter how much he hasn’t found his own relationship with God yet, there is a foundation of ritual, of action and belief and commonality.  We were an odd bunch this year, and some were added at the last making our table a bit cozy, but there is always room at a seder table for one, or two, more.  If there is a place for Elijah, there is a place for another Jew in need of community.
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