The First Steps (Part I)

This morning I’m meeting with Cantor Anibal Mass; meeting with him is the first step in the conversion process. At least at this particular synagogue (Shaarey Zedek). I’m hoping to take the Choosing Judaism class that he teaches which starts in September. I almost took it last year, but found out about it two weeks in and didn’t want to jump in two weeks behind everyone else. (And in the interest of full disclosure, I also had a mini freak out – conversion to Judaism isn’t something to be taken lightly. I decided at that point I still needed a little time to explore if it was what I really wanted to do. I’ve since decided that yes, it absolutely is.)

I have no idea what to expect today. I am equal parts nervous and excited.

Later today I’ll update on how the meeting went.

If I find out today that I will definitely be taking the class come September, I’ll need to consider how and when I’ll make the decision public. I guess technically I’ve made it public here already – but no one is currently following this site (because I haven’t told anyone about it!). I know I have a lot of friends who won’t support this, but ultimately it’s not about them. It’s about what I need to do to live the life that I want to live.

I’m lucky at least that I have a great support system in my family. My mom, brother and sister are all on board. My mom a little less so – she supports me doing what I need to do, but I think it’s hard for her having her kids leave the religion of their childhood… the belief systems she taught us. And I’m not the first one to go rogue… my brother is atheist/agnostic. My sister is still a Christian, but not of the type that we were as kids.

Some of my friends are really great about it, and I appreciate the support more than they know. Others I haven’t told yet because I’m pretty confident that the response will be less than enthusiastic. I’m also preparing myself for hostility and I’m telling myself it can come from the most surprising of places. Antisemitism is everywhere but I’m ready to face it. At least as ready as I can possibly be.

I’m going to get ready for my meeting. Part II to this post will come tonight!

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