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Posted on May 15, 2015

Middle School Sucks and Finally, When Your Head’s Above Water- K8, Israel

Middle School Sucks and Finally, When Your Head’s Above Water- K8, Israel


She walks into that middle school a mere shadow of who she is. She fidgets and pulls at her clothing, here and there, pulls her hair back tight, like she does to her personality- tightly wound, within, unable to breathe and express herself, and, yes, the second she walks into her den, she tears all them walls down. She roars and marks her domain and will fight to the death anyone who dares even walk near her when she feels she can let herself out of her own self-inflicted cave. Middle school sucks.


I never really shared the details of the bullying she faced, the ugliness of pre-teen girls sometimes, and how badly she was thrown into clueless misery when she walked in so innocently, naively excited to make new friends and find fellow kin to love life with. It hurt too much.

I love her so. She is so creative, sincere, smart, beautiful, and brave. So god-damn brave, and still, it hurts me to witness her journey through non-belonging, outsiderism, and being-invisible-works-best-so-I’ll-skip-classes-like-it’s-in-fashion-cuz-no-one-notices-me-if-I-show-up-or-not. I love my baby, and yes, when they tried to change things on her, to force her to enter those classes for they felt the ‘alternative schedule’ had gone on long enough, and she freaked at the fear and insecurity of having to enter those classes, face that level of Hebrew, not be allowed not to be invisible… She bolted, and it took a bit of time, but I got it. At first I resisted with, “but your counselor said,” and then I looked into her eyes and heard the desperation in her voice, and knew, without a shadow of a doubt, where my loyalty stands and who’s back I’d have.


So, I made the calls, said what I needed to defend her, and stood by the one who also attacks me with her viscious claws when she’s scared that she has no control over life at all. I get it.

I get it that life can be tough.

I get it that you yell where you feel safe.

I get it that she is trying waaaaay outside of her comfort zone.

I get it that I belong her, by her side, no matter what. For life. And that that is a true honor. To be allowed to be her witness, her cheerleader, her guide is one huge roller-coaster of spiritual growth.

And here we go….


I also know that she is and will be OK.

I know that she does have friends.

I know that her home life is usually marvelously supportive and refills her soul.

I know that her siblings are there for her.

I know that she has wonderful memories and does take advantage of some of the opportunities before her, and that she knows how to find love, and be herself where she feels safe, and that SHE IS FUCKIN MAGICAL and I’m so proud.


Oh, and, in other news, since my last update of life with the kids back in school,  I am slowing, proudly, beautifully, doing more and more little things that are beyond huge in feeling alive, normal, ‘in control’ (which we never really are), and together in my life. Yes! I am feeling functional, sane, calm, and able to do this, this family life thing, this single mom thing, this routine, domestic, beautiful spread of sunshine in my current life.

I’m writing really modest to-do lists, taking steps to get loooong overdue things done, and slowly, task after task, chore after chore, feeling like my grip is returning. Pain? Dukkha? Yes, the Buddha said it will exist in everything, and yes, it’s still there: uncomfortable conversations with my body- rejections/love affairs/confusion/stuckness; parenting clarity- I get it and then I lose it, and seek it again and again; and pain I wish I could experience instead of my Dahnya.

A few pics that reflect things we lived without until I got around to it and how nice life can be with olive oil, B12 (so I can function again), mountains of laundry done, to do lists crossing off things like ‘dentist’, and more. Some, like finally buying dish soap and toilet paper, solved other huge messes, like mountains of dirty pots and using the toilet sprayer when it was soooo cold outside and it brought way too much freezing water to the down under areas which shuttered in the cruelness and brutality of it all.







 Your Turn

Speak, loves. Tell me about life at home, which may be routine, but is surely never boring.  Tell me what you ate for lunch or the last good show you’ve seen. Tell me your insights on health, life, travel, family, and love. I’m here, listening to my mountain, and smiling.

Israel’s Independence Day Celebrations Photo Album- Kibbutz Hanita

You may enjoy reading about our coming home after life on the road to a war and a new reality:

The Sky, Cysts, Silence, Mangled Cats & Daughter Heroes- Returning Home- Israel

Running to Bomb Shelter- Sirens in Kibbutz Hanita

Wings and Roots- Euphoric Chatterings of Just Arriving Home

First Moments in our Summer Rental- K8, Israel

Read the entire Solo Healing Journey Adventure, loves.

First Evening Back in Goa- So Much Love- Part of the Nomadic Family Hits the Road Again, India

Utterly Broken- Day 1 Stretching Class, Solo Healing Journey, Canacona, India

Hate, Judgement & Wild Rashes- Unexpected Twists of Spiritual Healing Journies- India

And coming back home:

12 Day Back Home in Israel, 10 Insights from the Home Front

Being a Single Mom, Shifts in Life, & Other Midnight Oil Thoughts



We’d love to connect to you on TwitterFacebookYouTube.


The Nomadic Family  of five spent three and a half years settling into small communities in 16 countries world-wide. Now, they are acclimating back into life in Northern Israel and the story continues. Gabi lived alone in India for 3 months this winter, Kobi is going backpacking for 2 months alone this Spring, and the family will spend this summer in Sweden, Latvia, Estonia, and Finland. Follow their adventures as they share their emotional journey, their spiritual growth; their falling apart and coming back together, the real ups and downs, the sticky, painful, colorful, and magical moments of life on the road and back home.



Insanely unorthodox, embarrassingly honest, and on her path towards spiritual awareness, Gabi Klaf blogs about her family’s ups and downs in their now third year of non-stop budget world travel. This family of five has lived with an indigenous tribe in the jungles of Ecuador, hitchhiked throughout the world, danced with drunk Vietnamese at weddings, and hiked the entire Annapurna Circuit trek with a documentary film crew in tow. Gabi writes about the untold sides of family travel life, those moments that take your breath away, adventures and mishaps while globetrotting, and how bits of her soul remain in this small town and off the side of that river. She is a guitar-stumming, energy-healing, ADHD wind-loving scaredy cat. Hugely romantic, tantalizingly sweet, and hysterically funny, Gabi Klaf represents a rare Rubik’s Cube of family world adventure.


We’re out doing crazy stuff and making our dreams come true, every single one of them, and a few more that sort of flew into our mouths while we were smiling into the wind. Should you like what we are doing as a family, BUY AN EBOOK to support us, share this, tell any media source or local newspaper, leave a comment. Your footprint makes all the difference in the world friends. Gracias!

Gabi and Kobi, Dahnya, Orazi, and Solai

And, sweet new news loves:  In addition to parenting, family life and trauma therapy, Gabi is now offering Make Your Dreams Come True/We Wanna Travel But.. Coaching too. Engage with Gabi!





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