The Layers Project Magazine

Insights Into The Lives of Jewish Women

Al Chet

Merri Ukraincik | Categories: Features

My G-d, the G-d of Sarah, Rivka, Rachel, and Leah,

May all my cries of al chet reach you through my tears –

 

For the sins I have sinned in my praying

For the sins I have sinned when I could not pray at all

For the sins I have sinned by shouting in anguish

For the sins I have sinned in silence

For the sins I have sinned by finding fault

For the sins I have sinned by closing my eyes to good

For the sins I have sinned by complaining

For the sins I have sinned by effusing

For the sins I have sinned by conditionalizing my love

For the sins I have sinned by giving up hope

For the sins I have sinned by hoping beyond reason

For the sins I have sinned by rushing time

For the sins I have sinned by withholding kindness

For the sins I have sinned by withholding gratitude

For the sins I have sinned through impatience with others

For the sins I have sinned through impatience with myself

For the sin of taking things personally

For the sin of minimizing injustice

For the sin of rejecting what I see in the mirror

For the sin of ignoring my voice

For the sin of forgetting my mitzvos

For the sin of forgetting my kindness

For the sin of forgetting my truths

For the sin of forgetting You are always there, like a shawl draped over my shoulders

 

Forgive me all of this.

 

Let me atone and allow me to forgive myself.

 

Amen.

About Merri Ukraincik

Merri Ukraincik is a blogger and essayist whose writing has appeared on Tablet, The Forward, Grok Nation, The Wisdom Daily, and The New York Jewish Week. She is a regular writer at Hevria. the "Close to Home" columnist at the New Jersey Jewish News. and the author of  I Live. Send Help., a history of the Joint Distribution Committee. Merri is at work on a memoir about Jewish time. Read more of her essays and follow her at https://merriukraincik.com/ and on https://www.facebook.com/merri.ukraincik.

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