Today was Day 1 of a 2-day retreat for Rabbi's wives. It is held locally in NJ so I spend the day there and come home in the evening.
This is my third year attending and I always find it very refreshing and informative. Not to mention a small break from my regularly scheduled programming i.e my day to day routine. I don't usually post much about my life as a Rebbetzen. Mostly because I don't want to get myself or my husband in trouble :)
In reality, though, the rabbinate is a big part of our family's life and just having the opportunity to shmooze with others in similar situations is really wonderful.
At these conventions, I always marvel how different we all are as Rebbetzens: we look different, we dress differently, some of us are stay-at home moms, some of us work part time, some of us work full time. But we all manage to support our husbands and do our jobs, however we have defined them. I like to remind myself of that, that there is no one model of what the "Ideal Rebbetzen" does, says or represents. We all need to find our own niche and what we are comfortable with.
One speaker mentioned an interesting thought about dealing with other people's anger at you. Apparently Rabbi Nachman once told his followers, who were distressed about his vociferous opponents: "These people are not upset at me. They are angry at who they think I am, and that person is truly awful." It is a pretty deep thought. When a person is angry with us, they often see us in a way that is not really accurate. They do not hate you. They hate the person they think you are, but you know that you are not the spiteful, selfish monster they have conjured in their mind. And that makes their misdirected emotions easier to bear. Not that Rabbis or Rebbetzens ever have to deal with angry people or anything like that. Enough said :)