My rabbi talks about the concept of Hineini at High Holiday services. In Hebrew, Hineini translates into “here I am.” Rabbi Lefkowitz takes it one step further, and we repeat, “Hineini. Here I am. You can count on me.” We turn and repeat the phrase to our neighbors.
This practice has been in the forefront of my mind since the fall. A lot of times we say to someone “let me know how I can help.” And we mean it. But we don’t always know how to offer something specific, and then we feel regret when we fall short.
So many family and friends have been present for me and my children, to hold us up and to strengthen us. This is my third year participating in blogger Ali Edwards’ One Little Word challenge. The first year my word was “continue.” Keep on keeping on. The second year, my word was “sweeten.” Maintain the status quo while adding in bursts of happiness.
This year, my one little word is “bolster.” At the end of my yoga classes, I lie with a bolster positioned vertically under my lower body, stretching my spine into a gentle backbend. It’s a way to work out the kinks after a hard class. For me, it’s also a reminder not to leave everything on the mat when I walk out of class for the day. Remember that support, that cushioning, and how it feels to be part of a community where you’re fortified, buttressed, and strengthened.
Dictionary.com defines bolster as “to add to, support, or uphold.” What I realized is that I am ready to bolster others. I’m stronger now than I was, physically and mentally. I’m able to support others as they’ve supported me. I can be available as a helper and a comforter. I can be in the trenches. This may seem like something obvious, but for me, it’s a big step. It feels right, to be able to nurture my family and myself and have room left to nurture others.
From continuing to sweetening to bolstering. “To everything there is a season.” I might not always get it right. I might not always know the right thing to do. Regardless.
Hineini; here I am; you can count on me.