I’ve been spending a lot more time with my Siddur recently.

Since I got a new one, I haven’t been able to put it down. Previously, I hardly touched Siddurim outside of shabbes morning. I’m ashamed to admit it, but I’m changing- I’m doing teshuvah. In the old days, I’d daven shacharis and mincha in shul on shabbes, and attempt to read the prayers in my Hebrew siddur when I was on the train, but mostly my prayers were unstructured. I wouldn’t even say the amidah; I’d just look to the heavens and say what was on my mind. I think that’s more normal for a frum woman. We’re not big on public prayer- we’re supposed to remain hidden in the home. And even at home, we have no obligation to daven the way men do, so often, we simply don’t. In many ways it made teshuvah easier for me. Had I had to learn about zmanim and tefillin, I don’t think I’d be where I am now. Yes, I’m questioning. Yes, I’m exploring. Yes, I have my OTD moments and my reform moments- who doesn’t?

I think I like it better this way, praying from a book. Because it’s my book. It’s right for me. Because it doesn’t just speak to Hashem, it speaks to me, too…


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