When my older daughter was born fifteen years ago, I went to my supervisor and asked if I could work 4 days a week to have time with my baby. A year later, I cut my hours back to “mom’s hours” and she said to me, “It’s wonderful to spend time with her while she’s a baby. That’s for you. When she’s a teenager, you’ll want to be there for her.” She was right. I now have two daughters, who are 12 and 15 who need me in very different ways than when they were babies and toddlers. Sometimes it’s just a ride, but sometimes it’s a lot more and I want to be there for those moments because they’ll be gone in the blink of an eye.
And so it’s time for me to say goodbye to my professional role at Mayyim Hayyim. Actually it’s more like saying L’hitraot, which means “see you later” in Hebrew, because I know I’ll be back. Back to visit, back for immersions when life’s transitions invite me in and back for a Beneath the Surface class with my pre-Bat Mitzvah daughter in November.
I love working at Mayyim Hayyim. From the moment I walk through the garden in the morning until I shut down my computer to head home, I am challenged by my work; planning and designing events, talking with Board members, volunteers and mikveh guides, writing or working on the website, and having interesting conversations and discussions with my colleagues. In the last two years I have had the pleasure of managing four large benefit events honoring some terrific people and raising money for a place I believe in. I also worked on a number of smaller events- art gallery opening receptions, open houses, our birthday party and intimate conversations with Anita Diamant for various groups including two discussions on Sheryl Sandberg’s book, Lean In.
After a lot of introspection this year, I decided I want to “lean in” to my family and say no to some opportunities that come my way. For as long as I can remember, I’ve been working part-time while volunteering in the community and taking care of my family and trying to do it all well. Where will I go? What will I be doing? When I told both my kids that I was leaving Mayyim Hayyim, they said, “You should do your own events.” (Although the younger one asked me to wait until I finish planning her Bat Mitzvah next May). They are both away at camp for the summer and I’m going to do a lot of thinking about how I want to spend my time and what the next chapter of my life will look like. I’m sure some kind of event and conference planning will be part of that picture.
I’m going to miss working here. But I know that I’ll stay connected to the place, to the people and to the community of Mayyim Hayyim. I won’t go far.
L’hitraot, See you later…
Jody Comins is the outgoing Development and Events Coordinator at Mayyim Hayyim. She plans to spend the rest of the summer sitting on a beach daydreaming.