June 24, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

#Myorthodoxlife Is About Respect

#Myorthodoxlife is … Orthodox. At least, it’s what I strive for it to be.

Many posts I see are about women glorifying our accomplishments in the world, to show everyone that just because we are Orthodox, we can still do everything anyone else can, with the fringe benefit of being religious.

This is good. Great, even. Because truth be told, we certainly do rock, and our accomplishments are endless.

Those who feel the need to crush it are just a typical case in Psychology 101 of feeling inadequate and defensive.

But, here is a fact: Like you, dear #unorthodoxlife, I am actually just an ordinary human. My greatest accomplishment in life is actually being a mother and daughter. You don’t know me, per se, as I am so busy going about my life—I don’t have time to post it on national TV, though sometimes my life is funny enough to be a world-famous sitcom.

You may say, “But Vicky, you have accomplished so much in your career, with your hobbies and idealism. You are a dreamer; accomplish great things; and you effect change.” All true. But at the end of the day, what matters most is sitting around the table with my family and enjoying #myorthodoxlife.

I have my awesomely productive days. I have my days where I probably should have stayed in bed with the covers over my head.

Sometimes I am skinny, sometimes I am not. (Darn you, chocolate and wine.) Sometimes I check off all my to-dos. Sometimes I wonder why I bother making them.

Sometimes my ideas are out of this world. And sometimes they really belong in another universe.

My life is mostly like “yours”—rerouting life decisions at every turn of events we are faced with.

Irrespective of circumstance and outcome, my main goal is to be the best person I can possibly be to humanity.

That best includes tending to my family’s physical, emotional and even transactional needs. It includes work and giving it my all—and then some—so I know I do my best every day. It includes trying to be a role model by being sincere and remaining consistent but not complacent in my approach to the religion I love.

What shapes these goals, behaviors and aspirations? #Myorthodoxlife shapes them.

The blueprint I received some-odd years ago, called the Bible, outlining a bunch of stuff, including that, yes, as a woman, my first and foremost responsibility is my family, my community and my observance of that blueprint.

You may call it oppressive; I call it a privilege. You may call it narrow; I call it mind-thrilling and all-inclusive.

You may also spend a day with me and see how awesome it is to be me. But not better than it is to be you. Because we each choose what is best for us at any given point in this journey of life we are on.

My life is “mostly like yours.” You have a choice to have a family; so do I. You have a choice to have a career; so do I. You have a choice to be part of a community; so do I. You have a choice in what you wear; so do I. You have a choice to believe in God; so do I. We all have choices, and our choices affect every single aspect of our life. Why? Because, at the end of the day, most things in life have a domino effect.

My work supports my family. My family supports and appreciates my work.

My community supports me, whether it is picking my kids up from school; bringing them a forgotten lunch; or making me meals when I have a baby. People are there for me if I’m going through a rough time; by the same token, they celebrate with me when I have a joyous occasion. I support my community and try to reciprocate.

I support my family by loving them with all my might, and that includes going to work. I support my work by giving them all I can give.

I support my belief in God, by all of the above.

Through it all I try to respect my job, my family, my neighbors—even when we disagree and have different outlooks on ideas and other matters.

My life is “mostly like yours”—I guarantee that we are both doing our best to get through each day with a smile, a laugh and a sense of accomplishment when we finally get into bed at night.

So don’t mind me going about my daily grind; and when we meet, as I hope we will, I will give you the respect you deserve for being you and look forward to the reciprocal respect for being me.

#Myorthodoxlife demands that I don’t rip you apart for choices you have made that may be different from the ones I’ve made. That’s what #myorthodoxlife taught me. #Myorthodoxlife looks like me accepting you for who you are and expecting the same in return.


Vicky lives in Edison, works for Apex Global Solutions in Montebello, New York, and is the mother of three!

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