I generally don’t post my kids’ achievements on my blog or facebook, but I couldn’t resist this one as it is so close to the themes of this blog. Here is Tefillin and Standing Out by my eldest. It is short so you can head over to V’Tzivanu to check it out. Here is a quote:
Later, the first week after bat mitzvah, when I could wear tfillin, I left my tfillin — which my parents gave me — at home the first time because I was embarrassed to put them on when no other girls were. I eventually took them to school and one of the male teachers who put them on every week showed me how. The teachers were very friendly and made me feel more at ease. A few people gave me weird glances but nobody really cared. I felt different and a little on edge. The tfillin helped me feel like a Jewish adult, but I felt a little unsure of what to do. The next time I put them on I still needed help tying them, but I remembered more. I was more comfortable wearing my tfillin because I had done it before.
On an interesting note, she never mentions tallit, which she saw women wearing since birth, and which her school presented as non-optional (unlike tfillin).