I was born in California and from there I moved to Oklahoma, Kentucky, and finally to Massachusetts. I have moved frequently in my life due to my father’s job (President of a University.) Although, it was tough to say good-bye to friends, and to begin a new life, moving around as much as I did has provided me with the skills I need to adapt very quickly in a new environment to make friends quickly to easily become acclimated to my new living arrangements.
While I was raised Jewish and my mother comes from a family who practices conservative Judaism, my father was born catholic and while he didn't convert he gave up Christmas and other holidays affiliated with Christianity he even attended temple with us. Even he recognized the importance of Judaism and both of my parents taught us while it was important to remain open minded to all things, people, and religions that Judaism is special and we should feel proud to be the chosen people and to embrace this religion we were born into. I have always felt proud to be Jewish and even after my 11-hour flight felt a certain sense of ease and calmness when I arrived to this holy land. In the states and in most places Jewish people are a minority.
It is a wonderful feeling to suddenly be in a place where Judaism is in the majority. To finally be surrounded by people who understand bringing matzo and jam to lunch without receiving any strange looks from your peers. To be able to hear things like Chag Sameach, Le'shanah Tova, or Shabbat Shalom! It just feels like home all the time. Aside from being Jewish the Israeli culture is also something I've fallen in love with.
Now, I think you can only say you're in love when you've recognized the pros and cons, the ups and downs, both the good and the bad, i.e.: When you are able to say you love someone, something, or somewhere unconditionally. Israel's service is slow, people cut you in line, the outspokenness. Things are a wee bit disorganized here to say the least. And yet everything is still okay. And while people can be a bit too open here (putting it tactfully) they are also very warm and welcoming.
Chutzpah is something you eventually find humor in and learn to live with and even begin to miss a little when it's not happening. I appreciate and love Israel despite its Chutzpah and expenses. This is a culture and a place I'd be too devastated to live without, this is a place I feel at home and safe. I fell in love and I want to stay and be apart of Israel. While living in Tel Aviv would be ideal, if finding roommates and living arrangements within Tel Aviv is too difficult due to living expenses then I'm sure there would be renting possibilities in Ramat Gan, Ashdod, or Ashqelon as well where I could take the Sherut, bus, or train into work everyday.
I will obviously still need a bit of financial help as Israel is very expensive and I do not have much money to start with but I am most certainly willing to try my best no matter what to earn money in addition to the financial aid I am receiving as well as obviously being a contributing member to Israel's society. Once I have a steady job set and a place I am renting and things are "beseder." I would like to be taking part in Ulpan classes and eventually continuing studies at a University. I want to be apart of Israel I want to work the week and have Shabbat candles lit for Friday night every week. While that is my summarized plan. After all these things are set in place I see myself being an Israeli citizen.
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