Tomorrow’s Mourning

Today was a little less painful, although I suspect as we head into the weekend, marking a week since we buried my dad, things are going to get rough again with lots of ups and downs to come.

At shiva on Wednesday night my Rabbi, who officiated at my dad’s funeral (“my dad’s funeral”–now there’s a phrase I didn’t think I’d write or utter for a long time to come), was explaining to me some of the Jewish mourning rituals. I am supposed to wear a torn ribbon over my heart to symbolize the loss of a loved one, literally a representation of the tearing away of the deceased and the tearing that goes on inside you. I am not supposed to take part in festivities or celebrations for at least the next thirty days, although more religious Jews do this for eleven months. And I am supposed to say kaddish–the Jewish prayer of mourning–for the next eleven months.

So far as forsaking celebration and festivity, I asked him if my final two rounds of chemo over the next 30 days would suffice?


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