Balancing responsibility for others with responsibility for myself has been a challenging experience all throughout life. I have always felt responsible for family, partners and those around me whom are regularly present in my life. I have always felt responsible for being the “good” one and for maintaining relationships. When family needed me, I rose to the occasion. After all, they’re family.
As a human, as a husband and as a Jewish member of society, I have changed my opinion of responsibility and accountability. I have learned that I am only responsible and accountable for those who are accountable and responsible for me. The difference here boils down to an opinion I have formed later in life: those who want to contribute to your life, will do so. Those who want to help you along your journey, will do so. Those who don’t want to, won’t.
It is our moral and religious obligation to care for those in our family and those in our community. My peace and lack of constant guilt has come from that belief: I am only accountable and responsible for those who are responsible and accountable for me. Relationships are built on a constant circle of love and support. Without a mutual sense of relationship, you will deplete yourself of your own resources by trying to maintain something which never stops needing maintenance. In order to stay full, we must stay full ourselves, and help fill the souls of those who feed our souls.
Randy Perneszi, formally Randy Coleman, grew up in Belmont – one of the few who can say they are a Charlottean! He started the process of converting to Judaism last year and officially became a member of the Jewish community in June of 2018. He has a wonderful husband and a houseful of pets who keep them busy!