Hold My Hand

Lately I’ve noticed how my kids hold my hand

File Under: Memoir

Maybe it’s the “Hootie and the Blowfish” reunion, but lately I’ve noticed how my kids hold my hand. My 7-year-old daughter often takes it as we walk down the street to her camp bus, while answering my questions and telling me about the highlights of her summer. My 2-year-old son often grabs it when he’s feeling clingy. He’s at a stage where he spontaneously says, “I love you dad,” and “you’re my buddy,” multiple times a day, in a row, and I never get tired of it. We’ve even had a few times this summer where we walk hand in hand as a family of four, and it seems such like a great photo op, but even I know that taking out my phone to capture the moment will ruin it. Every time I find myself holding hands with one of my children, I’m aware of this specific moment in time that they are willing to reach out in this way, and I hold on for dear life.

Jay Rapoport

Nationally-touring music educator Jay Rapoport takes Jewish values and stories and transforms them into "Ruach Rock," a catchy piano-pounding style influenced by Ben Folds and Billy Joel. His first album of original Jewish songs, With All Your Heart, was released in November 2010, and he travels the country sharing his unique blend of instant sing-alongs and engaging musical storytelling that gets people out of their seats and rocking. Jay has performed at URJ Biennial, NewCAJE and NFTY Convention and has served on the faculty of Song Leader Boot Camp, led t'filah for ARJE gatherings, and taught at Hava Nashira. Jay honed his skills as a camp songleader, touring clubs and colleges with various bands, and incorporating original music into his roles as camp director at Temple Rodef Shalom in Falls Church, VA and youth advisor and educator at Congregation Rodeph Sholom in NYC. Jay studied piano and singing at Berklee College of Music and has a master's degree in religious education from Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion in New York City. Since 2014, he has served as Director of Lifelong Learning at Temple Sholom of Chicago. His second album of Jewish music, They Tried To Get Us, We Won, Let's Rock! was released in December 2014.