Monday, February 7, 2011

Monday Thoughts

I don't actually have an official post for today. Just checking in on the personal level.

Tomorrow I take a 24 hour trip to meet with the full beit din for the first time. As you can imagine, I'm a wee bit nervous. But more than that, I'm annoyed with myself. I realized that I've been basically living an orthodox life for 11 months now (8 months since I got kashrut implemented fully in my house, thanks to a move), but without being in an official process, there's no "credit" for that, no way to really prove it. That means it feels like another year of wasted time (going on 7 of those) because I couldn't get off a fence. I could have pushed things forward, but I accepted the "why don't we just think of this as a holding pattern until you move?" idea without a second thought. Since I was just starting my final year of law school, this even seemed like reasonable advice. This is a scary process, and at the time, the "holding pattern" still felt like I was moving forward. Now...I'm not so sure it was. It was still some kind of moving forward on my end, but I don't know what it was on their end. I worry that it's going to be counted as dead time.

To my credit, I've learned a lot in the last year, but it (and more!) could have been learned more easily, regularly, and cohesively in a structured process.

So tomorrow, hopefully, I'll get the parameters of my official conversion process and get the green light to begin studying with a tutor. I have very little hope of being given a time-frame, and that's ok. I'm very blessed to have such wonderful in-real-life and virtual friends who've been so encouraging over the last few weeks and months!

I just want to finish this so I can get on with living a normal Jewish life. Sometimes it's very draining to be status-less. I'd just like to be the average, run-of-the-mill Jew for once. And honestly, I'd like to stop thinking, talking, and writing about conversion all the time. I just want to be. Several of you have been kind enough to tell me how helpful this blog has been for you. It's been equally helpful for me because I needed to get these thoughts out of my head and onto a piece of paper. (Any other GTDers out there??) If I can write these things down, they rattle through my head a lot less. So perhaps the moral of the story is that I really AM crazy after all ;)

(I also have a less "freak-out" Jewish errand tomorrow! I'm going to meet a rabbi to learn about his congregation as my potential new shul home :D I'm very excited about it because I think it's going to be a very good fit!)

In other personal news, the puppy is growing like a weed! And he's generally as stinky as a weed too. Also, he ate my glasses on Shabbos. Literally. I think he might be amoral because he has no concept of the word "no" or shame. Off to the optometrist with me!


  1. I don't think I've commented on your blog before, but I wanted to pipe in and wish you the best of luck with the beit din. Although I can see why you'd feel frustrated with your "unofficial" observance not counting towards your conversion, I would at least hope that your lifestyle would improve their opinion of you, and illustrate your absolute determination to live an observant Jewish life. After all, you've been doing it even when you don't "have" to, right?

    Sorry to hear about your puppy's problem sticking to a similarly kosher diet, however. I'm sure the nutritional value of a pair of spectacles is negligible. ;-)

    Gillian, in bonny Scotland

  2. Thank you, Gillian! And good to hear from a new voice! I don't know if I posted this anywhere before, but the famous ex-fiance who introduced me to judaism was a Scottish Jew!

    My friends give me the same advice, but that sneaky voice in the back of my head still makes me worry :) On the bright side, I forgot that I met one of the rabbis 5 months ago, and I was frum then, so maybe that helps too!

  3. congratulation and good luck with the meeting! :) I am excited for you! and I long to be at that point too. being a tweener... well its just not all that great, is it? :)

  4. You use the acronym FAIL often on twitter. What does it stand for?

  5. Hahaha, AJ, I'm sorry! It's not an acronym! It really is "fail," but it's capitalized for emphasis, which was started by a website called The FAIL Blog at

    There's just lots of fail in my life :D

    And thank you, Elle!