To tell you the truth it’s so easy to get lost in the planning process and forget whose party I’m planning and what it’s all about. Is it about the ceremony? The party? Becoming an “official” Jewish man or woman? The food? The invitations? The entertainment? As I ponder this more…this is really about our kids and what they would like (with just a PINCH of what WE want).
When I received the date for my daughter’s Bat Mitzvah almost three years ago, immediately my event planner hat went on and I began planning MY event. Researching on the web and screenshotting anything and everything I could’ve ever imagined, only to be disappointed when I showed my daughter all of MY fabulous ideas. How could we be on such different pages?
The better question was, how could I convince her to like my ideas? Did I even need to convince her? Couldn’t I just do what I wanted? You can get so caught up in the fun details that you lose not only yourself, but you can lose sight of the meaning of the Mitzvah! What a Bar or Bat Mitzvah means may be different to everyone, but I wish I would’ve figured it out earlier in my process, it would have saved me a lot of time and aggravation that’s for sure!
Negotiating with a twelve-year-old is no easy task! I found it easiest to sit down with my daughter and discuss what this all means to her. My daughter is a sports fanatic and it was important to her (and me) to have her personality shine through. So the pink chevron kippot of my dreams turned into a sports kippot to her liking. Besides being a sports fanatic, she is also not comfortable in a dress and sandals, so, we compromised, a dress was non-negotiable for the service, but if she wanted to wear tennis shoes with the dress, then I could agree to that and for the party, it’s jerseys, jeans, and your favorite kicks… guess I get a shopping spree for myself for that one!
So in the end, who is it really about? That is for you to decide, but all I know is that discovering yourself and your child should be a part of the Mitzvah process and what a wonderful process it is!