The 33 Defining Stages Of Celebrating Your Bar Or Bat Mitzvah

It’s time to become an adult. L’chaim!

1. At first you’re just trying to deal with the nervous excitement as you wait to find out you Bar or Bat Mitzvah date.

2. And then the announcement comes. It may seem far away, but you know it’s time to start preparing.

3. Everyone at Hebrew School is comparing Torah portions, so you set up some meetings with the cantor to make sure you’ve got yours down pat.

So many different tropes you need to learn.

4. Luckily, you’ve got a CD of how it’s supposed to sound to help you out, which you end up listening to at all hours of the day and night.

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5. Pretty soon you’ve got it totally down - you’re so ready for your service.

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6. Now you just need to make sure to get in your required hours volunteering at the local Jewish food bank.

No volunteering=no Bar or Bat mitzvah.

7. You send invitations to all your friends, and you make sure yours stands out in case someone else from another temple has the same date as you.

You’ve got to get as many people to commit to your party as possible.

8. Of course, everyone from Hebrew School invited you to their bar and mat mitzvahs, so you’ve got to attend those before it’s time for your own.

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9. Finally, the day arrives. You put on the tallit you picked out from the Judaica shop a few towns over.

Which is obviously coordinated with the rest of your outfit.

10. You make sure to put on one of your super-fly customized yarmulkes.

11. Then you have to head up to the bimah to take some pics with the whole family even though you’d rather be saying hi to your friends as they arrive.

12. When you’re ready to read your Torah portion, you have to hope and pray that you can still remember all the words without any of the vowels written in.

13. And when it’s time to carry the Torah around, you try to keep calm even though your quivering lip betrays how scary this moment really is.

You know you can’t handle the 40 days of fasting that come with dropping it.

14. Before the service can end, you have to deal with your parents making a really embarrassing speech in front of the whole congregation.

You can only hope they don’t tell THAT story.

15. You leave the sanctuary and head over to the reception hall for a brunch of bagels and lox.

It’ll be hours before you’ve finished talking to LITERALLY EVERY FAMILY MEMBER, so eat up for energy.

16. And then before you know it, you’re getting dressed up in your hottest outfit and heading over to your party.

17. You direct all of your arriving friends over to your welcome book or poster, conveniently located right by the gift table.

You want as many mazel tovs as possible.

18. Finally, it’s time for the party to really get started.

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You’ve got to OWN your entrance.

19. The DJ and his dancers start getting the crowd pumped up with some guided dances.

“Fist pump! Now kick!”

20. Pretty soon, you’re grooving.

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21. The DJ starts handing out Bar Mitzvah swag - plastic top hats, multicolored sunglasses, and - of course - glow stick rings.

22. You take so many pics when the photographer comes by because you need a separate one for each group of friends.

School friends. Hebrew school friends. Camp friends.

23. You need to grab an athletic friend because it’s time for some Coke and Pepsi.

The DJ better cut you some slack if you mess up. It is your party after all.

24. After that, you’ve got to hope you’re feeling ready to show how low you can go in the limbo contest.

25. It’s finally time for a little break. You head over to the buffet to grab some chicken fingers and french fries.

26. Then it’s time for the cake ceremony. You’ve carefully selected which song to play as each different family member comes up.

And you use “We Are Family” for your favorite relatives, of course.

27. Everyone gathers together to begin the all-important hora.

Hava nagila, y’all.

28. And, of course, you’re the center of everyone’s attention when you go up in the (ch)air.

But obviously your mom refuses when it’s her turn to get raised up.

29. It’s time for a slow dance. You grab your crush and keep them close, even if the DJ calls snowball.

30. But as the night goes on, it’s basically just the adults who are still on the dance floor, doing the macarena.

31. Because you’re too busy saying goodbye to friends and making sure they remember their customized t-shirts.

32. After everyone has finally left, you pass out almost as soon as you get back home.

33. But after everything you’ve gone through, there’s nothing like waking up the next morning.

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You did it! You’re officially a Jewish adult now.

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