Friday, November 12, 2010

Reminds Me of My Youth

thanks to Max for the cartoon



I was a teen in the 1960's.  When my public school peers were attracted by drugs and other such things, I was turned on by Torah via NCSY National Conference of Synagogue Youth of the OU.

My parents were stumped.  What was wrong with me?  I wasn't like anyone else's kids.  Today, what I did would be familiar.  Most Jewish communities and clans have seen the phenomena.  It may not be as common as marrying non-Jews, but it's not as from Mars like rare and unheard of as it was in 1965.

Today's term for people like me, BT-baal teshuva, was unknown then.  The same goes for FFB-frum from birth. 

When I was growing up, I thought that all Jews were like myself.  We ate all foods and in all restaurants.  I didn't know that there was a Shabbat.  If I went to shul, I wore extra nice clothes, but I didn't know that there were restrictions.  We walked, because it was a distance we always walked, but I must have realized driving wasn't allowed, because the shul parking lot was closed.  Only when I was thirteen and we moved to Great Neck was I exposed to an Orthodox synagogue, because that's the one we ended up joining.  No, not from ideology, Great Neck Synagogue's Rabbi Wolf was very welcoming even to people who could barely pay a symbolic amount as dues.

Yes, the rest is history...

8 comments:

Shelly said...

Me too

Batya said...

Many of our Shiloh neighbors took that route.

ilanadavita said...

I like the new layout and the picture in this post.

Batya said...

Thanks! Someone sent the picture along with some others, and it just inspired me.

A Soldier's Mother said...

Right there with you. I started being religious when I was 13. Figured out that there were two parts to being a Jew - Israel and Torah. I wanted Israel but figured I was too young to come to Israel on my own, so I'd take that Torah "thing" until I could get to Israel; then I'd junk the Torah part and have the Israel part that I really needed. Took me until I was about 17 to realize that both was the most amazing combination and more than another decade to actually get here. Love the cartoon!!!

Batya said...

It's amazing how many there are of us! Thirteen, that must have been something for your parents. But no doubt, Paula, you're the determined type.

Hadassa said...

Shalom!
I'm in the club too! I starting rebelling like that when I was almost 17. My parents took it well, probably because we're all totally geeky and fairly conservative (not religiously) in nature. I arrived in Israel at the age of 18 1/2 and have since left for no longer than several weeks at a time.

Batya said...

I guess I shouldn't be surprised. I wish I hadn't had to fight my parents so much, but that's the way they've always been with me. I'm not the daughter they wanted.