Look at me you’ll see a frum and chassidish girl. But do you know how far I feel from this life? How disconnected I am from it all? How fragile my belief is? How many things I do and know that you’d never imagine?
I do what I gotta do and say what I gotta say. But what I think… How I feel… Is worlds away.
I dress modest, I pray, I preach chassidus and teach Chabad values. But as I stand in front of my students… Words flowing out that I don’t even believe in… I feel dizzy. How much longer am I going to fool the world? How much longer can I go on living a double life?
My family is not just frum, they’re super chassidish. Yet do you know how knowledgeable I am in TV shows, celebrities, non Jewish music, dirty humor? I don’t talk to boys, yet do you know how many boys I’ve gotten close to on social media? When I hang out it’s just to chill, yet do you know how close I got to going clubbing?
At the Chabad house I have to talk with passion about the Rebbe, and here I have to teach about the rebbeim – when I myself don’t feel connected. I enjoy learning those practical life stuff like kindness, sensitivity, acceptance. But what’s this whole hiskashrus stuff? Isn’t the Rebbe overrated?
I help people follow and understand the prayer in shul, and I teach kids about the importance of kavana – when I myself just mumble through davening, saying the least I can.
I lead a club for Chabad girls to learn about their uniqueness, being Chabad and on shlichus and to learn to appreciate what they have – when I myself don’t get it, don’t appreciate it, don’t feel it.
Everywhere I go, I can’t make any real friends. Because I can’t relate to anyone, and because nobody knows the real me, because I can never reveal the real me. I look like something I’m not.
I’m so sick of being like an OTD in the closet. I don’t even want to go OTD, I just want to live my life applying Chabad to it in the way I feel is the realest for me. I just want to live a life of happiness, positivity, acceptance and love, all things I couldn’t find growing up.
So if I don’t have the drastic “fall” in mind, what’s keeping me of living the way I want?
People know me a certain way and like… changing will take away all credibility there is to my name. After years of preaching all this stuff and looking so strong and proud, can I just drop it?
In the place I’m now I’m a role model. I have to be the example of what a Chabad girl is in a super frum setting. I can’t just take off my mask, while I do push the limits as much as I can get away with.
My family doesn’t even tolerate my loose hair. Or the shades I paint my nails in, the lengths of my skirts, and my style in general. In their eyes, I’m already so modern, even though I still do look so frum… What will be when I continue expressing myself more and more?
I don’t know what else is keeping me.
But I’m scared.
I fear the time when I’ll have to explain what kind of husband I want. What I’m looking for is so different from what the men in my family are like. I’m scared that my parents will look for boys they think are fit for me, and that they’ll never get close to what I need. Because they have no idea of who I really am. They got no clue what my mindset is whatsoever. I’m scared my siblings will mix in and don’t let things happen. I’m scared of explaining that alongside the things I’m looking for I also want my husband to be someone who’s gone through hard times. Who has struggled. Who questioned stuff and works on himself.
What if I want to marry a BT? We meet halfway… My Gd, the shock my family would have. Can a FFB marry a BT? I say hell yes. My family – I have no idea how they would take it.
And BT or not, the kind of boy I imagine marries girls who are way more modern than me. I mean, who actually look on the outside like I am inside. So should I take steps to start being that? Big or small steps? I’m scared of not being able to marry who I want to marry because I live this double life.
And inside I’ve already chosen my path. The path which is my own, which is what I think and feel is right and true for me, the path which I have yet to reveal. The path which I yearn to be able to follow already with pride and thus join the Chabad community that suits me.
But I don’t know what to do. I’m stuck.