Without a doubt, I get the air-headed mom award. It took me eight days to get batteries for my camera when my parents were here and after finally taking pix, I can't find the wire to download them. So, I will have to tell the tale pixless.
Well, my parents stayed at that famous hotel on the beach where Jordan took a jellyfish in the face and for the last two nights transferred to my air conditionless house. I thought they would pass out- literally the two hottest days the entire summer: my mom walked around with a pack of frozen peas in her bra screaming, "How the hell does my daughter from Pikesville live LIKE THIS!!!!???" I'm highly adaptable. *smile* We left for the Siena synagogue at 7:00 am, all six of us in my fit-five-person car, slammed in...really enjoyed that warm, cozy family feeling as Sofia Madyson's elbow jammed into my chin. Jordan looked handsome in a white button-down shirt and a pair of khakis with a kipa that I believe my step-father gave us before we moved to Italy. My mom had prepared to wear a very pretty sleeveless black dress with black hose and heels, but when I saw it, I said, "Mom, this is an orthodox synagogue in ITALY and to arrive requires a mile and a half hike on cobblestone medieval streets...DO SOMETHING!!!" The end result- she threw on a pair of black leggings and gold sandals and a spanish-looking shawl to cover her shoulders- God I'm sorry I don't have that downloading thingamajig. LMAO I wore a long black skirt, black short-sleeved shirt and my grandmothers gold locket. Just in case anyone was curious.
Okay. We arrived, still don't know how we did it, because my stepfather can't walk, at 9:00 am. The rabbi greeted us, kissed Jordan's cheeks, exchanged mazel tovs and started the Shabbat Service. There was another Bar Mitzvah the same service, adorable boy, and until about 10:30 we were the only ones in the service. People arrived fashionably late.
Allow me to say this: we have cochlear implant radar. Obviously, my mom, Sofia and I were sitting on the opposite side of the synagogue from Luca, Eddie and Jordan, so every now and then we would send signals to communicate. I will say that Jordan can still read my lips like a champ, because I managed to scream at him a couple of times for being restless...wordlessly from across the synagogue. At a certain point, I see Jordan frantically trying to get my attention because an elderly man wearing a hearing aid and a cochlear implant entered the synagogue. I spent ten minutes screaming silently for him to walk over to the man to show him his- yes, in the middle of the service, because everyone seemed to feel free to say hi to everyone else within the service, but Jordan was too shy.
Then the man left the room to walk outside and Jordan got up his courage to go and talk to him...keep in mind, this is his Bar Mitzvah- very laidback atmosphere and friendly. He spoke to the man, who received his implant from Prof. Martini in Ferrara and returned smiling from ear to ear. Cochlear implant moment.
Then....................................................................the Rabbi motioned for Jordan to come up to the Bima and my stepfather followed. As I told everyone in other posts, this was a symbolic Bar Mitzvah, reading from the Torah was not possible as Jordan had never studied Hebrew, so he was responsible for reading the prayer before and after the Torah reading. Read 'em like a champ!
It's just one of those moments where you sit back and think...I never ever in a million years thought my deaf son would be able to speak at his Bar Mitzvah, then the flashbacks slam you and the whole thing becomes overwhelming. Combine that with thoughts of my Pop and I had no chance. At one point the Rabbi from Florence, which is the head synagogue site of Tuscany, covered Jordan with his Tallis to bless him. I looked at my mom, she looked at me and I started digging for the kleenex.
We didn't understand a word of the entire ceremony, it was all in Hebrew. But there was a lot of love and faith in that room and some things go above and beyond language.
After an incredible kiddush...Jordan had fries at McDonalds.