The Grants’ Excellent Adventure - Making Aliyah 2016

By BJLife/Marsha Grant

Posted on 07/29/16

It’s hard to believe that we have come so far in our dream of making Aliyah. Or that it is so imminent. T minus 5 days and counting. After living in Baltimore for 30 years, my husband Avi and I are making aliyah to Yerushalayim. We have 3 sons in Israel but also a daughter whom we are leaving behind in Lakewood. Ouch. Hurts to even write it. But that pretty much much encapsulates the aliyah experience. Very bittersweet. Tremendous excitement but also sadness and loss. And fear. A lot of fear.

So, how did we get here? A brief (thankfully) review of the timeline that led us here:

Dec. 2014 - I get a job offer (Systems Engineer) where they will consider letting me take my job with me to Israel. The company is called Skyline Technology Services.

July 2015 - My mother is nifteres. She lived in Baltimore and I was responsible for her so as long as she needed me, I could not go anywhere.

Sept 2015 - We commit to making aliyah in the summer of 2016 (that’s so far off in the future, it will be forever till then).

January 2016 - Time to get commitment from my company that I can move my job. I wrote up a business plan and met with the Executive Committee. Part of the plan is that they bring me back 4 times a years for a week or so. They agree. Green light!

February 2016 - We put out the word that our house is on the market. No agent. No sign. In two weeks we have a buyer - that’s a whole story in and of itself, but we are being brief here.

March 2016 - After several months of checking Isa Bracha (a list of apartments either for sale or rent in the neighborhood of your choice that is emailed out each day), I located 2 possibilities and traveled to Israel just before Purim to check them out. Arrived in Brussels Airport in time for the terror attack. Not a story for now. Bottom line - We bought an apartment in the Maalot Dafna neighborhood of Yerushalayim.

May 2016 - My husband is laid off from his job as a controller. Seemed bad and I can’t say I was too happy about it. It was a big hit financially.. But on the upside, he could devote all his time to preparations for the move. And it’s a LOT of work.

July 2016 - Movers pack up all our belongings (well, the ones that made the cut and are zocheh to go with us - and we think will fit in our apartment) and load up the 20 ft container. We moved out of our house of 30 years and into an small in-law apartment owned by friends of ours.

After wonderful goodbye parties and many dinners out with our dearest friends, we are now at our last Shabbos in the USA. We are going to Lakewood to spend Shabbos with our daughter and son-in-law and their family. That will be the hardest goodbye of all. B”H, that I can say - see you in November! In order to make it easier on myself, I already booked my first trip back. I will be back mid-November for 10 days.  That really does help take the sting out of goodbye.

Monday we will drop off the last car (we sold both our cars to a mechanic) and pick up our rental van. Monday afternoon we will drive to Passaic to very close friends of ours and spend the night. Tuesday morning we will head to the Newark Airport and drop off the rental van. Flight leaves Tuesday afternoon.

Still seems unreal  that we are actually going to do this. No idea yet what challenges await us. It’s a huge step out of my comfort zone and I am quite nervous about it. But, with all the hashgocha pratis that we have seen so far, I cannot help but believe that we are on the path that Hashem wants us to be on.

Next installment - The flight and our arrival in Eretz Yisroel!