Counting days when you are young is often exciting. You count down to your birthday or the end of school. If you are experiencing infertility, you have likely counted days too and it was probably not so enjoyable. Days until ovulation, days after ovulation, days until a test, days waiting for results. Then there are the weeks (not to mention the months) and then treatments get involved…
In traditional Jewish practice, the days between Passover and Shavuot are counted. In Temple times, an offering (the Omer) was brought every day. Today the only thing to do is just count the day: day 1, day 2, day 3, day 4…
Agriculturally the Omer was a result of harvesting what was planted in the fall. The harvest had to go well so their was grain for the year. Mystical traditions developed to make the counting to be a time for spiritual preparation for receiving Torah on Shavuot. The time marked the elevating steps of spiritual connection, ascending to Sinai.
So which is it? Looking back at the planting or looking forward towards ascending spirituality?
Whether or not you count passing time, it passes. When you stop to notice, you can look back at where you have been or look forward and focus on what you want in the future.
How do you want to move through time? With dread? Fear? Anticipation? Hope?
The Omer also opens another option: you have the opportunity to become aware of that actual moment when you count. The Omer is a measure of where you are right now. Where are you? How are you doing right now?
Noting time similarly can be an opportunity for self care when experiencing infertility. Not that magically counting cycle days will be a joy, but that you can stay present and prevent infertility from dulling you to everything else in your life. You can regularly check in on where you are. Day 17 – Are you feeling okay? Day 18 – Have you checked out? Day 19 – How are you coping? Day 20 – Do you need a little self care?
At this season of counting, take “account” of yourself. Try to stay present in your own life. You could add your own “Omer” daily offering of gratitude or hope, or just take a moment to connect yourself.
May you have something every day to offer gratitude and may you continue to grow towards greater connections.
B’vrach – with blessings,