“Hi, what can I get you?” The sweet woman behind the counter at Lazy Bean Cafe in Teaneck, New Jersey just asked me as I reviewed the menu hanging above.
“Um.. How about a Decaf coffee please, thank you so much!” I say as I hand her my credit card.
I don’t remember the last time I ordered a decaf coffee. As I sit down and start sipping my coffee, I can’t help but feel insanely giddy about tonight (hence the decaf)! Tonight, I have the immense honor of photographing Tehilah’s Bat Mitzvah and I am beyond excited! As I sip my decaf, I feel my heart pounding and my smile spreading. why am I THIS excited!?? I mean don’t get me wrong, I get excited before I pick up my camera no matter what, but this is different, this feels special.
As I sit here contemplating, I hear the word “Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year)” and my thoughts are abruptly interrupted as I accidentally start listening to the two ladies next to me. My heart smiles. I love Judaism. There is something so calming about it. Something so beautiful, loving and simple that makes my entire mind relax. That’s when it hits me, this is exactly it. This is exactly why I am so excited about tonight. It is another beautiful way to celebrate our heritage, our traditions. It’s another way to honor the love we have for our values, our families and our beliefs. How could I not love capturing days like this?
My alarm goes off, I finish my coffee. It’s time to head to the synagogue, it’s time to be surrounded by dozens of screaming girls, beautiful decorations and excited family members hugging and dancing. As I double check to make sure I have everything, I can’t help but think how lucky I am to be a part of such a rich culture.