Often, people look and see just races in a relationship, whether it be two of the same races or two different races. But what people don't think about are the religious aspects of it. I've dated guys the same race and religion as I and guys of a different race and the same religion, yet this is the first time I've dated someone outside my race and religion.
Growing up Christian was being at church almost every Sunday, talking to God about our worries and troubles was an every night thing, Christmas was celebrating the day Jesus was born, not about what gifts you got, and on the day of Easter, you continued to learn more about the death and resurrection of Jesus. You learned to appreciate God for everything you had and more.
For a long time, I thought my God was the one and only God, but when I entered fifth grade, I soon was exposed to more. It was a Kippah, the hat that my Jewish classmate wore. He said they wore it because it's respectful to cover their heads in the presence of their God- Adonai. Throughout middle school, we learned more about religions around the world. I remember thinking to myself, "This is way too much information to remember," and for that reason, I never imagined I would be with a guy that did not have the same beliefs as me.
On Monday, April 10th, 2017, I found myself sitting at a table with my boyfriend, his family, and close friends for Passover. I was truly terrified when he had asked me two weeks beforehand. I interrogated him on everything. What are we doing? Who's going to be there? What should I wear? Is there anything I should know? But, my biggest question was, do I have to sing?
Our compromise was that since I was going to Passover, he had to come to church with me at least once. Now it was his turn to ask questions. Church was uneventful, Passover was two days away, and I was still stressing.
I probably changed my outfit maybe four times the morning of and attempted to change twice when we were about to leave. We arrived to his house and I got a crash course on everything, yet when I was actually there in the moment, I seemed to forget everything I was taught only moments before.
What we had was a Seder dinner which is the religious celebration for the Jews escaping Egypt. We ate matzah, which is bread that doesn't rise because the Jewish can't eat bread or anything that has flour and yeast in it. We also had charoset, bitter herbs, and eggs as religious foods that represent different parts of Jewish escapement from slavery in Egypt.
On this night, we sang, laughed, and I learned more about the Jewish religion than I would've ever imagined. Coming out of this has taught me that being with someone nothing like you, broadens your horizon so you can experience and overcome new things.