My family is planning to move very soon into a Jewish community. A few years ago such an idea would have terrified me. Silly to be terrified of godliness, I know- bit i think it was mostly because I feared not being able to fit in or be "good enough." My husband and I, although we have not yet converted, have kept the mitzvot to the best of our ability, from what my husband has learned in his extensive study and research. As a result, we keep kosher, and the Shabbos, adhere to modesty standards, and are raising our children to love and fear G-d through the keeping of the commandments. I am reading Rebbetzin Jungreis' book "The Committed Life" and for the first time I am experiencing what I call"Judiasm with skin on" meaning I am seeing the richness of Judaism lived out through the pages, and I am so very excited to have the privilege to be connecting myself to such a people as this. Because I have never lived in a Jewish community before, my family has always been an island of sorts...it is almost too wonderful to imagine that soon I will be able to turn to women such as yourselves with my questions, and not to the overwhelming bookshelf we have acquired over the years. I think for myself, the hardest part has been the isolation that has resulted from our Torah observance. My husband's parents and my own parents have never been comfortable with our faith (since we were both raised in christian households) I guess I'm really hoping for some good friends....especially older women to serve as much needed "mother figures." I Know in my heart I am doing the right thing, and I am so excited to begin this next exciting part of my journey....but Oh, it would be nice to hear some kindness and encouragement along the way...I need a pillar of cloud to shade me from the scathing remarks, and a pillar of fire to light my way- to remind me that if Hashem is for me, who can be against me? This post is a bit scatterbrained, and probably riddled with grammatical errors...but somehow, here, I don't think you'll care. I think I may have found a place to gather friends for the journey ahead. I truly hope so.