After a heighten level of intoxication at a friend’s balcony, erratic topics of conversation began to surface, like the quirks of Steve Jobs! Recalling this pseudo discussion the next morning, I kicked off my weekend with a YouTube video of his famous “Connecting The Dots” speech at the 2005 Stanford University commencement. I was then pumped enough to view another Stanford University commencement speech, but this time by Oprah Winfrey in 2008.
Both speeches shared a template of 3 wise fables from Oprah’s and Steve’s lives, and so predictably, they had a common conclusion: identify, cultivate, and apply honest-to-god passion to your work. When I was living in America, this was a no-brainer, and I followed their advise to a T. I’ve been a die-hard Zionist from an absurdly young age – ever since a child could comprehend images of blown up buses and that her people’s flesh was shredded into hundreds of pieces. I wanted nothing more than to immerse myself in subjects relating to Israel, and to suck anyone who crossed my path into the discourse. I was lucky to have been given ample opportunities to begin a career in pro-Israel advocacy immediately after my own graduation. And at 22 years-old, I came to work each day to effectively extend my core ideology and true identity.
As the story goes, I took my ideals to the highest level by making Aliyah. And though my life in Israel is undoubtedly richer, I’ve butted-heads with a terrifying void. By longer having to advocate, what’s my purpose here? By officially becoming Israeli, what’s my ulterior identity?
These questions remain unresolved after two and a half years because I’ve been consumed with issues of practical survival. Soul searching, I’ve come to realize, is a luxury. From the very beginning, I calculated that high-tech pays well, my English is an asset, and specific industries were olim-friendly. I’ve been operating entirely on minimizing my risks, and maximizing my sustainability. And looking back, I would advise anyone making Aliyah to do the same. Just get your feet on the ground first!! This strategy has allowed me to seize ultimate control of starting life all over.
So what’s my calling in Israel? I really don’t know yet. But only now, with the foundation I’ve built beneath me, I can afford to embark on a sober and patient search for true answers.