This is something I wrote back on June 9th, but for a number of reasons, I haven’t found it easy to post until now.
A good friend of mine is converting to Judaism. I found out a few weeks ago, but my reactions seem to be really slow. This past Shabbos, everyone at my congregation was working through it, since he had revealed his decision publicly the week prior. It was a really rough Shabbos. The Sunday following, I spent half a day with him, talking about stuff.
I don’t really know how I feel. I seem to feel a lot of things, but they rise to the surface and then disappear into a murky sea of emotions again. I feel really sad. I’m losing a friend, the one I prayed Musaf with on Shabbos, with whom I discussed hard questions of how Jewish theology intersects Christian theology, to whom I could relate openly my theological and personal discouragement. He made the congregation an encouragement, a soothing touch to my troubled soul. He brought life and joy to the Chanukah program, and inspired the use of some very touching Hebrew songs.
I feel discouraged about facing people in the congregation now. I’m too tsetimlt to defend myself against their concern: Is he going to do this too? I feel like the only way to cope right now is to sit very still and try to let everything come to rest. I wish I didn’t need to worry about proving myself when I’ve been left all on my own to figure out how to put my world back together.
What do I do now?