Amnon Maggid — Connecting Israel & Cincinnati
Better than Butterscotch—by Hadas Silver
By Hadas Silver
A birthday is a time in my family when we traditionally gather everyone, get together, and, like a good Jewish family, we eat. When I was younger, I used to get super excited—waiting for my grandparents (who would come to Israel from London) to give me a big hug, and of course, a big present (preferably a Walkman or a dog).
The older I got, the more birthdays became less about the presents and more about the family. Throughout the years, my family has adopted many different traditions for birthdays. There is now a special and specific place in my home for birthday cards—any other place would just feel wrong. For years, my birthday cake has been butterscotch and whipped cream vanilla cake with sprinkles. My favorite. Another very important component about birthdays in the Silver family is that birthdays go on for weeks.
And in honor of my family’s tradition, my birthday here in Cincinnati, sure enough, went on for WEEKS.
Being away from home at a time when my family is usually around me was somehow scary. I knew how different it would be, but to be honest, I didn’t know great it could be.
This year, my birthday consisted of multiple celebrations with the kids I work with, three different host family celebrations, two celebrations at work, one celebration with BBYO teens, and one big party with friends.
I didn’t realize how much I really am a part of a community. A community that is important to me, one that inspires me, one that is so warm and welcoming that I felt at home here on my birthday, even without butterscotch whipped cream vanilla birthday cake.
Birthdays are a time to spend with your family. And this year, I got to spend it with my new, big, American family.