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I have been to some workshop for work and one thing got me thinking about my conversion. The presenter more or less said that sometimes we think we want something when in reality we want something else and the key question to ask is "what would be different the day after you got it". So, what would be different in my life the day after I went to the mikve (officially converted)? So this is a description of my life the day after I converted.

I am cooking in my kosher kitchen (which was already kosher before minus the fact that there was a non-Jew cooking there). Before I eat I say brachot and sometimes I even remember to say them after eating. Shabat I keep just the way I have been for some years now. I contact friends to arrange plans for the upcoming holidays. Quite a bit of my free time is spent reading, learning and discussing about Judaism.

After years of being a guest I am finally an official member of my community. Being a member does not change anything at the orthodox services as I am a women anyway. But I get to pay (yeah) and I get the community news and I’m officially invited to whatever happens. Which is nice, although with the years I have created my own sources for these news so that I don’t really need it that urgently.

I don’t have to go to awkward explanations every time I go somewhere where they don’t know me. Whenever I am now asked by security personnel I can say "yes, I am Jewish" and get to skip the stupid questioning. I can register for Jewish events without filling out the "I am not Jewish but want to attend" comment box or try to sneak in somehow. Also it doesn’t feel like I’m half lying when I tell people that I don’t eat/drink/celebrate/do X because I am Jewish.

But the most important change in my life is "legitimization". Now that I’m "really" Jewish I have more argumentative power to stand my ground. Whether it is in convincing my boyfriend’s family that I won’t come to church with them, or telling someone that I have separate dishes for Pesach, or planning my [hypothetical] children’s education with my boyfriend, or asking someone to introduce a Jewish element to my [hypothetical] civil marriage ceremony. Finally countery"arguments" like "you are not even Jewish" or "they don’t want you, why bother" don’t work anymore.

So basically, my life has not changed. It has finally been officially given the label it already had.

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