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Reflections upon my 6th Aliyaversary

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference. – Robert Frost

For me it was more of an airport than a wood, but 6 years ago, I too found myself facing two paths to my future. I tried to look down each road and see where I would end up. I stood on my tippy toes and squinted into the distance to see as far down as I could but, of course, I was only able to see so far. At some point, the decision became a leap of faith.

Down one road, I saw family and friends. I saw a nice house with a lawn and activity-filled Sundays. I saw straight and clean paths and happy children surrounded by their cousins. I saw blueberries - lots and lots of blueberries. But then, as I squinted to see further down the straight, clean path, I also saw a future where our People would never truly be accepted. I saw that the more we tried, the more we would be isolated. I saw thorn bushes and hate. I saw accusations and mixed messages. I saw a 2 dimensional existence resulting from the pursuit of dreams with no clear end goal. That was as far as I could see. I couldn't see what came after that. I hoped that further down the path the thorn bushes would clear away to make room for more happy children and blueberry bushes. I hoped, but, based on our history, I was not optimistic.

Then I peered down the other path. I could not see as far down because the path was windy with lots of sharp turns. I noticed that the path began with bumps and loneliness. I could see my children longing for their extended family. I could see smaller apartments and a language and culture I did not understand. On the other hand, I could also see sunshine and warmth, protection and community. As I stretched higher to peek over the hills and valleys, I could swear I saw a bright light in the distance.

So when the two roads diverged, Yosef and I chose the one less travelled by. We were scared and hesitant but we took a glance at each other, and with one last nod, we grabbed our children's' hands and began the long and windy path to our future in Israel. We understood and hoped, though, that it would not be the road less travelled by for long.

Now, 6 years later, we have begun a new path trying to re-walk and smooth the path we chose and make it smoother for others. We are trying to soften the turns so they are a bit less sharp and maybe, the next family that chooses to take the road less traveled will be able to see further and be prepared for the bumps and turns that lie ahead.

We know how scary it is to look down the path with bumps and turns, to turn to all your family on the other path and say "I love you. You mean the world to me and this is hard but we still must walk the other way. We have to choose another path and I hope you will join me on this path soon." I hope you all will. Because, if more of us choose the road less travelled, it will no longer be less travelled. It will be filled with smiling, familiar faces and road markers easing the twists and turns and uncertainty. Who knows? Maybe one day it will even be filled with blueberry bushes.

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