I had a discussion with a high school friend last week. She was puzzled about my new way of dressing. Here is how things went between us:
Linda: Hi Nitza, its nice to see you after all these years.
Me: It is good to see you, how have you been?
Linda: I’m fine. How about you?
Me: Doing well. Been going through some changes but all is good.
Linda: Yeah, I can see.
Me: What do you mean?
Linda: Well, look at how you are dressed. Are you Muslim?
Me: No. I am converting to Judaism
Linda: What? Why? They don’t believe in Jesus
Me: Yep, that is true, I don’t believe in Jesus. I don’t think I ever have. I just did what was always expected of me.
Linda: How can you not believe in Jesus? He died for you. He has saved you.
Me: Save me? From what?
Linda: Your sins!
Me: G-d forgives my sins
Linda: Yes, and that is who Jesus is
Me: I don’t believe that. In fact, I know it is not true. But, I’m not here to debate with you on this point.
Linda: That’s good, because I don’t want you to try to tell me that he is not real. I know there are issues with his teaching but he is real.
Me: I understand. All that matters is we live our life as G-d would have us.
Linda: May I ask, why have you covered your hair? You have such beautiful hair. Is this what your husband made you do?
Me: Part of my orthodox conversion teaches me to cover.
Linda: Cover what?
Me: Oh sorry, my hair.
Linda: Why? They don’t like woman to be seen?
Me: It has nothing to do with that, this is about honoring my husband. It is so much more than that and I really don’t have time to explain it all to you. I don’t think you would even understand if I did.
We parted without exchanging numbers or anything. I could tell she really was upset with me and my new life. I felt good. I love covering my hair. I love that I don’t have to spend all that money on products to make my hair look nice. I also love that there are stores that sale scarves that really make covering look good.
How do you handle your friends?