Growing Older

Several generations ago, a woman got married in her early 20s, had children immediately, and by the time she was finished having children, she was well on the way to being a grandmother. And life was shorter. Today, most of us can hope to enjoy many years when our focus shifts back to our own goals and purposes, much as it did in our 20s. Questions of meaning and purpose again present themselves. At the same time, we have acquired the wisdom of years, and some of us long to have that recognized and celebrated within our communities. Other important events characterize this time of life: our bodies change, some of us become grandparents, some of us retire from long-established careers, and at some point we may move out of our homes and downsize, or even move in with children or into a facility. All of these changes present opportunities for ritual.

Latest Rituals

This ritual is intended for marking the end of the 12-month absence of menstrual bleeding after which a woman is considered officially menopausal.
the hand of a woman writing in a journal
A powerful ritual that encompasses all of the emotions of transitioning to a wheelchair.
a close up of a hand holding the rim of a wheelchair
“No words can describe it. / The first time I held her on my chest…”
a new infant
A poem on the inconsistency of time passing.
roses in hazy summer sunlight
“G-d forbid we eat grocery store drek.”
clawfoot bathtub
“I saw, in our decaf, the plea for rain / we ask on behalf of the god of our ancestors”
damaged tree in forest
“So teach me to number my days / Savor the music of the birds / Entwine my branches with those of others”
two yellow birds on grey bare branches
A poem on counting the years with your grandchildren.
children in silhouette playing on the rocks
A complete ritual for monthly exams for all people with breasts
hand holding one apple blossom
A complete ceremony to honor becoming a grandparent, either with the new family member’s parents and new grandchild present or from a distance
Smiling grandmother being hugged by toddler in pigtails against a black background

The Reconstructionist Network

Serving as central organization of the Reconstructionist movement

Training the next generation of groundbreaking rabbis

Modeling respectful conversations on pressing Jewish issues

Curating original, Jewish rituals, and convening Jewish creatives

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The Reconstructionist Network