Nine years ago, in February of 2005, I had my Bat Mitzvah. In the Jewish faith, when a girl turns 12, she becomes a woman and has a celebration called a Bat Mitzvah, for boys, it happens when they are 13 and it is called a Bar Mitzvah. When you translate this to modern day, it’s basically like super sweet sixteens, but let’s call them super sweet twelves. Girls tend to throw large parties, with an extravagant theme, get a dress they will most likely only wear once and invite their friends and their parents’ friends, but only because they have to.
At my Bat Mitzvah, my first and oldest niece was only three years old. I remember watching her fall asleep during one of the hora circles, play with every giveaway possible and begged us to take home one of the miniature carousel center pieces, even though they were ceramic, heavy and would probably break on their drive back to Boston.
During the party at one point, my family and I talked about where we would be at her Bat Mitzvah. We said my older sister would probably have kids, I might have a boyfriend, and my niece might have another sibling by then. Two of those things were true; I’m still working on finding a boyfriend. Now, nine years later, she is 12 and celebrating her Bat Mitzvah all weekend long with family, extended family and friends.
It has been a little surreal watching her grow up. Watching her prepare for her big day has been pretty awesome. So far, she has handled herself very elegantly and was very tolerant through hours of pictures, which she usually can’t stand. Watching her at her Bat Mitzvah has brought flashbacks to my own, and I can’t help but think if she wondered where she will be in 2 years when her younger sister has one. Time certainly does fly, and it’s been a little overwhelming and tear inducing for me, but I could not be more proud of her for all the accomplishments she has made in the past few years and am honored to call the elegant young woman she has become my niece.