Nowhere To Go But Up

Nowhere To Go But Up

By Sarah Shalek (Newcomb)

I had the pleasure of seeing the film Mary Poppins. The lessons I took from it were: Everything’s possible, even the impossible. Nowhere to go but up. Today or never. Too focused on where you’ve been to focus on where you’re going. Other ads I noticed: What comes from the soul you can’t fake. Everything comes together when the curtain rises. Live your life on purpose. I take all of those important messages to heart and apply them, using a formula I just learned, thankfully: Purpose, plan, perform.

So often people tell me they are searching a lifetime for “the right person.” I respond: Be the right person. So when people assess others externally and wonder what someone has to offer, I ask them: What kind of question is that? There is no perfection in this world, friends. My list was simple: Gentle, accept me as I am, courageous enough to grow, spiritually connected, walk with me, learn with me, make challah with me, loyalty, passion for helping others, overall simchas hachayim in approach to life including ups and downs. I got lucky. From a song: “You look at me and, babe, I want to catch on fire.” Priceless, in my book. Some people get used to being alone. For me it was unhealthy. From a song: Aren’t you tired trying to fill that void? I was. Marriage is important. I was taught there is no way to accomplish individually what two can accomplish in a marriage. G-d instructs us to marry. Make it work. I had one dealbreaker: Stagnating, not addressing an issue, not seeking help. I will work with anything/anyone in progress. No holding back, friends. We must take risks or regret will ensue. A close friend and fellow Queens Jewish Link writer whom I admire greatly wrote about “raising the bottom.” While I am a 12-step member, I never heard that expression before. It sounds ideal that others would learn from someone else’s fall and take it to heart as prevention. I try to learn from what I see around me, and certainly from my own mistakes.

I had a meltdown over pretty much nothing. I reacted to something happening unexpectedly, which was not the end of the world. I validate and forgive myself anyhow. We are here to learn and grow. The man who knows me better than anyone defused me. A neighbor came by. I told him what happened. I have no shame about this meltdown. It happens. Rarely, but still. I realized at times I think too much and decided to “let go and let G-d.” I believe that Hashem knows what He is doing. Even when I don’t and even when it hurts. A rabbi said we are given a feeling of inspiration burst for a reason and we must take it and run with it, not ignore or delay. He said we must be ready and put in our hishtadlus and recognize opportunity instead of justifying, and that it is especially for us as Hashem is involved in our lives daily. From the song “Mama Rochel”: Can the mercy of mere flesh and blood run deeper than yours, our Creator?

People never know what is going on in somebody else’s home. Well, maybe I do because I am a real estate agent and go into everybody’s home, but I will never tell, and it’s not only because I’ve been learning the laws of lashon hara for over three decades regularly; it’s because it is nobody’s business what anyone else is doing. Who are we to judge? Better we feather our own nest. Someone stopped me and said she had no idea that all was not well in the years before my divorce. I told Dr. Bennett that his dad, Dr. Bennett, did not know about my divorce. He said, “Of course, we don’t gossip, we’re Bennetts.” Sorry to call you out, Bennett family, but all of you – men and women intergenerationally – are superior role models in so many ways including being true healers. Our job here in this world as I understand it is to actualize our own individual potential. The assets I want to acquire are the ones we take with us into the next world. Charlie Harary spoke about focus and how we’ve conditioned ourselves that time can be lost on distractions like social media, cell phones, television, and other things on the Internet – time that can never be reclaimed. We are always busy with stimuli and cannot catch up on what is truly important or just be still. My energies and time can be best spent on mitzvos, love, growth, self-work, family, community, friends, and chesed. As I reviewed the occurrences of 2018, including miracles and difficult events, I realized all of the growth and progress (and mistakes) made. Skipping into 2019, b’ezras Hashem, I felt that I had gone as far as I could on my own and it was time for a partner on the journey. I have been blessed and am filled with gratitude. I have chosen to take a chance and move forward in a big way. I figure I owe it to all of you to practice what I preach about taking risks, never giving up hope, giving others a chance, change is possible, and it’s never too late. Friends, as the curtain rises, remember: There is nowhere to go but up.

Sarah Shalek (Newcomb), and family/team are NY State Licensed Realtors for over 17 years, serving all areas in the five boroughs and Long Island. They hold several specialty certifications and are members of the Long Island Board of Realtors and the Multiple Listing Service of Queens and Long Island. They make their home in and are proud long-time members of the Kew Gardens Hills community. Sarah can be contacted at 917-459-7549, or by email: Coming soon: Your