I had been asking myself this very question: am I on the right path? How do I know if this is the right way? Well, last night I got my answer.
I was out at a bar with some friends. I was standing outside in the smoking area, in the cold, crisp London evening. The music and the low lights of the purple-cushioned, swanky Vietnamese restaurant poured out onto the street between the banker-bro clientele beside me.
I had my hands in my pockets to try and keep them warm. In my right hand, I was holding the house keys which belong to my mother. With my mind on the conversation, and hands in my pockets, I felt along the detailed metal of a key chain. My mother had found the small, elongated, detailed piece of metal in my grandfather’s garage. The key chain had a little Star of David on it, a faint relic of his Jewish ancestry and ours.
While I was talking to my friends, about them wanting to purchase a farm and their experiences being parents, I mindlessly rubbed the back of the small keychain. And as I did that, I felt some small pieces of paper slide off the back. I pulled them out, and incidentally split one of them in two. They were just small pieces of trash, I thought, that might have been part of the original packaging. Part of one of the papers was a blended gold color, to resemble the bronze color of the metal of the key chain.
There was another tiny, thin fold of paper. For some reason, rather than rip it up, I decided to open it. To my surprise, there was a note inside. I thought it was written in Yiddish, but it turned out to be Hebrew. I was just holding it upside down. I took a picture of the note, and sent it to my Jewish and Israeli friends.
“It's the blessing of the road. It says “Here, I am sending an angel before you to keep you safe on the road and get you to the place I've prepared”,” one told me.
“It’s beautiful, it’s a prayer / wish for safe travels. It’s basically stating an intention to send an angel ahead of you to protect your path and bring you safely to your destination,” said another.
I sent these notes and the pictures to my mother and my aunt. My mother had been using this key chain for months, being blessed the whole time without even knowing it.
This was a moment that warmed my heart. It was a sign, or at least I would take it as one. I felt seen, and special when I realized what it meant. It told me that I have nothing to worry about. Apparently, I have the blessing of my ancestors, recent and distant. They believe in me. They sent that small piece of paper all the way to me after months, years, decades of secrecy. Who knows how long it had been since someone had discovered its hidden message? All I can think now is: why me? Why this moment? Why this specific time on my journey? Julia Cameron talks a lot about synchronicity with the universe. Some people say it’s the business of fools, all this crazy stuff about aligning our energies. But at this point, I’ll take all the crazy energy I can get, and let it bring me peace.
I have their blessing. I am grateful.
This piece was from my first time in the UnMute writing series, led by Ann Randolph, January 2022.