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  • Jane

Cherishing the moments: Sisira, Bee & Sandra


I get these moments often - a deep surge of joy somewhere inside between my belly and my chest.

The joy comes from my household. I am sitting here in the divided part of the lounge room in the dark because I am so-called meditating. But I stopped to write because I felt the surge, and I usually don’t manage to write when I feel it.

Yasha/Coby is praying quietly near me, on the other side of the dividing curtains - it is nearly the end of Shabbat. Bee (Coby’s girlfriend) just offered me a special Vietnamese dish she prepared - eggs soaked overnight in soya sauce. Surprisingly it was tasty (she cooked them a little longer for me cos of my sensitivity to raw eggs). Bee also fed mum. Mum is sitting in the kitchen, content, waiting for me to finish my sit before I put her to bed.

Of course there are conflicts that arise - Bee gets annoyed with Coby, I get frustrated with Bee, I need patience for everyone, but overall it is a very special scene and household. It really works. Mum is nurtured, Coby is nurtured, Bee is comfortable with our family and very helpful. Sisira is a good and caring girl, as Lena is too ( just slightly older :-)).

I treasure how it is and am also aware of its vulnerability and impermanence. Of course one day it will change.

So meanwhile I try to capture it in my hands, in my eyes, my ears and in my chest. It’s quiet, beautiful, fun, communal, caring. We can do it. In the 21st century, in Melbourne. It can be done. It’s a model for future living. It nurtures the old, the mentally unwell, the newcomers, and it nurtures me.

I reread the previous paragraph - it’s not usually all that quiet. But there are times that you feel that quiet, deep, still feeling. And there are times when the kitchen’s buzzing with activity - Sisira and Lena, Coby and Bee all cooking, mum wiping the dishes, me trying to grab a cup of water and escape. Gil is usually here on weekends - another body in the kitchen :-)

Coby finds the squashiness difficult - he’s not good with physical closeness.

Now Shabbat is over. We’re all here. Mum’s folding clothes, Gil’s studying, Yasha’s sitting at the shabbat table looking at an old album. Somehow I find the scene very moving - especially watching Yasha - already grown up, yet not. He is content with the religion, and he brings nachat/joy to the house except when he goes on about God too much. Then we all argue.

I cherish these moments because time passes and and the feelings are different the next day or week or year, and so life goes on.

S, who lives with us, mum and her carer

Sandra (a wwoofer from Spain) teaching mum to dance

Bee & Mum. Hairdressing time

Happy with all the fuss!


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