Ari, Rosh Hashana & The Seattle Times
To say its been a tumultuous year would be an understatement. But to say it
has not been a spiritual year and one filled with intense lessons that
heretofore our family and friends had never even begun to experience, and thus
one we will have to keep with us, would be untrue. So going into Rosh HaShana
5763, what message can we hope to gain from both the lessons of this past year
and the desires of this upcoming year?
I think I could wax philosophical and try to give you my trite ramblings of the lessons learned and the dreams yet unfullfilled, or I could simply convey a message that Ari gave to Steve Kelley, his friend and a sports columnist for the Seattle Times, that I was privileged to find out about this morning after reading his column on page D1 in the Seattle Times this morning, the message being "It's O.K." I have enclosed the link below for those of you who do not get the Times. (I have also copied the article at the bottom of the page, but I encourage you to read it in the paper, if possible, to get the full flavor). It kind of says it all and is an incredible message to take with us into the new year.
You who know Ari, will not be surprised that he has made his way onto the
front page of the sports section of the largest newspaper in the Northwest. And
not for his basketball prowess-which was tremendous, - but for his courage.
And you who have known Ari over the years would not be surprised that he would be profiled for his courage, as opposed to his basketball.
But what I find remakable is that our dear little Ari has made it onto today's Seattle Times sports section for his courage, and the story has been so poignantly told by a man who has known Ari for no more than 6 months. What I find remakable is that our dear little Ari continues to inspire even those that have only known him in his current weakened physical state, despite having such difficulty expressing any emotion, that even then, his true neshama, his true soul, his true spirit, is so clearly evident.
THAT is the lesson I will take with me this Rosh HaShana. These are the "resolutions" I will take with me this New Year. That if Ari can continue to inspire and teach and grow and "never give up", despite (currently) not being able to walk or talk or hardly being able to see, think what we can accomplish with the gifts G-d has given us. Let's not squander those gifts. But if we do, remember Ari's message..."It's O.K." Let's just try harder next time.
So please, G-d, grant all of our friends and family, a Healthy and Spiritual New Year. In the merit of all that they have done to help Ari and his family, please let them have all that is good for them, as only You know. And may You please grant a complete and speedy recovery for our dear son, brother, relative and friend, Ari Grashin (Aryeh Noam Chaim ben Devorah Chana), and all other Cholim amongst us. And may we all be standing here next year as spiritually elevated as we have become from the lessons of this past year.
Shana Tova / Happy and Healthy New Year
David, Debbie, Mayer, Josh, Ari & Zach Grashin
P.S. Debbie & I want to ask for your forgiveness for anything we may have done to you this past year. If we somehow slighted any of you or failed to show the proper thanks to any of you for all you've done for us, please know it wasn't for lack of appreciation, only lack of energy or a laziness on our parts. G-d willing, we will continue to grow and will hopefully learn from our mistakes so we'll get it right the next time and we won't have to continuously apologize after the fact.
P.P.S. I don't even have to tell you, but if you enjoyed Mr. Kelley's article, let him know. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org
He is a good man and a good writer (as you'll see below) and above all, a good friend!