It's funny that in life you can run into so many that claim to "keep it real" but it's usually just that...a claim. Nothing more. Words that vanish into thin air as soon as they leave the lips. Then....a diamond in the rough. Someone you never thought of surprises you by keeping it real.
Let me share with you a story that need to be told. A story of recognition, love, trust and undying loyalty.
Live can be difficult enough being a Jew, but event more so when you are an incarcerated one...like me. See, being a Jew (a "practicing" Jew) is hard work in prison. Lots of institutional rules and regulations have to be followed. So, of course, one stands out like a sore thumb (that's me!). Anyhow, eating kosher in prison is not the easiest thing to accomplish. Especially in Florida. So it's extremal sensitive during the High Holidays: Purim, Passover, Shavuot, Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Chanukah. These are just to name a few where special needs and foods are required. It can be frustrating and, at times, be a real juggling act considering how many people we must depend on to "keep it real".
A month before Passover we (the 8 or so Jews) are in a mad dash to have all necessary items for the first Seder (meal) of Passover...how do we accomplish this feat? Well, first we must receive permission/approval from the Chaplin. Then the Warden. And then, it's our (Jewish Community) responsibility to find someone to donate the foods along with someone who will donate their time. Finding someone to donate their time can be the hardest part. This person needs to be willing to use their time to deliver donated items on a specific day or risk having it being rejected. That is a major headache and very stressful for whomever this falls on.
The shlepping (driving around) this year happens to be my girl, Jennifer (pictured below with me).
As Rabbi, I speak with the weight and voice of the whole Jewish Community when I say...."THANK YOU!" Thank you for all that you do for me and all of my brothers. You honor me, Jennifer, and I appreciate you more than words can ever describe on paper. Through all this, baby girl, you still find the time to doll yourself up and come see my sorry ass every weekend. There is something to be said about that.
Do you have a diamond in the rough? If so, pick up that pen, or phone, or mouse and you keep it real for a change.
~ The Rabbi ~
P.S. Today's Mitzvot: "A Psalm" in Hebrew means "To Remind". So, remind the ones who stand by your side how much they mean to you!