What does it mean to be Jewish? Hannah Herbst tells us about the complexities of her Jewish identity.
In a casual conversation over dinner, my mom recently asked me, “Do you consider yourself to be a Jew, Hannah?”
Growing up in New York, I was surrounded by Judaism. I went to preschool at my temple and learned the Hebrew alphabet in conjunction with English. I sang with the cantor and brought in any rusty, old pennies I could find for tzedakah.
I continued to attend temple I got older. I would walk there with a close friend on my neighborhood aqueduct. When we both got the part of ‘Esther’ for our Purim spiel, we ran lines back and forth in preparation. I would occasionally practice my shofar for high holidays, to the chagrin of anyone within hearing range.