I grew up in an a-religious household. We were nominally Christian. My mother was Catholic and my father is not into the whole religious thing.
At 16 my mother died. She was a good woman. She took care of us all, my sister, father and I. She made my clothes until I was 12. She made dinner and kept the house. She was always home when I came home, always.
The priest next door came by to visit shortly after she died. My sister and I were stacking wood. The priest said that she died for a reason and that we should just trust G-d.
Trust G-d? How was I possibly going to trust a G-d that would let my mother die? How was I possibly going to be able to handle such an off handed comment from a man that did not know me from any other kid on the block?
My journey begins here. Mad. Angry. Antogonistic. I wanted nothing to do with religion. Nothing to do with such stupid comments. There is no god that would torture a person for 2 years and then let them die. There is no reason.
For years I encountered people, Christians who would try to tell me that I had a hole in my heart and if I only accepted Jesus then everything would be better. Ha! That was worth a good argument. How could I possibly have faith when the only faith I had was that I would wake up each morning and the ground would be beneath my feet.
I went to the Dominican Republic my senior year of high school and dated a young woman who’s mother was a fanatical evangelical. She infuriated me all the time. And the rocking, speaking in tongues and blaming everybody as sinners did nothing to help my interest in religion.
I went off to college and met my first Jewish person (at least that I was aware of). Oh by the way I married her. We dated for 5 years before we decided to get married. I knew that if I was going to marry her that my children would be Jewish. I could not see myself standing on the outside arguing against Judaism if did not know anything about it. That would just be stupid. So I started studying with a rabbi.
To make this long story short. I converted, got married, had kids. I am 14 1/2 years a Jew. I study, practice, participate and wrestle. I have been writing about it for a couple of years and now have joined Blog Midrash. My journey continues and I hope to ask questions and make you think. Thinking and wrestling and do things with intention are my tools for my Jewish journey.
For my next step in my journey I will be called to the Torah on May 30th to participate in a group adult b’nei mitzah with 6 other adults. My portion is Naso chapter 6. If anyone has some good advice (I can’t chant or remember a tune) I could use it.