A mess of boxes

Day 4 of working in the SLS vitrual law firm. My home office is slowly becoming a mess of boxes and files on the floor and I am now helping clients deal with the initial flood of coronavirus notices from tenants and contractors etc. But today I want to reflect on more personal thoughts. It was last Friday that it hit me that I, my family, my law firm, my community were in the beginnings of a radical change to our lives. Last Friday started with discussions among my partners in which we recognized that we needed to immediately plan for transitioning our law firm from the traditional central office based law firm to a virtual one. That discussion and the intense planing effort which it set in motion was a jolt to my reality but did not compare to what I would confront later in the day. Fridays are always shorter work days for me as I leave at 3 pm to prepare for the Sabbath. Ever since I was in high school, when I did not have school on Fridays (but had school on Sundays), Fridays have been the day on which I slowly transition from the world of work to twenty-fours focused on the spiritual, prayer, and family. Last Friday afternoon, as I was getting ready to begin the Sabbath with a prayer service at my synagogue, I was abruptly informed that due to the coronavirus and the Governor’s order limiting public assembly to no more than 250 people ,that every synagogue in our community (of which there are many) was cancelling all prayer services, classes and programs for the foreseeable future. Unprecedented! I can not adequately describe the impact of this announcement. The synagogues and other religious institutions are the core that unite the hundreds of families that live in our close knit community. Beginning on Friday evening and continuing all day Saturday the streets are full, from morning to night, with people going to and from their synagogues, families visiting friends, kids playing in the parks ,and teenagers socializing with one another. But last Saturday the streets were literally empty. Everyone was hunkered down in their homes. It was Snowmgeddon without the snow. It was then that the impact of the pandemic came into crystal clear focus for me. This pandemic that came out of nowhere was radically changing my life – everyone’s life – and the challenge was to adapt to the radical changes. Over the last few days as I have been confronting all the many changes, I have resolved that I will not let this pandemic change who I am and who I strive to be as a person and as a professional. So my focus has been helping others – colleagues, staff clients, friends,and community members to get through this “thing” secure in the knowledge that we are all in this together. This is how I am trying to keep my “sanity” as we move closer to the day when we will be ordered to “shelter in place”.

Shabbat Shalom. May the Sabbath Queen enter in peace and bring gladness and good cheer to all.

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