I love religious paths, I think they're awesome and fascinating and variously fulfilling. generally, I feel like they don't quite fit with my outlook on things, especially because I feel like I need freedom to believe and not believe at my whim and leisure.
The path that I've felt most personally inclined to is judaism. the depth and richness of the cultural traditions, the beauty of the liturgy, the freedom and trepidation with which jews approach the divine. But judaism is a faith that is really an adjunct of the jewish culture....one can convert to a religion, but not to a culture, since culture isn't just a matter of professing a viewpoint, it's a matter of shared background. No amount of study or work can change the matter of my goy upbringing.
I've said for years that I'd love to be a part of jewish culture, but even if I found myself accepted into a community of jews, I couldn't ever look at myself in the mirror and see myself as someone who belonged.
I went to shabbat last friday with a sweety, and it was like something had fallen into place, something that had been missing. A sense of quiet grace around me, just out of reach. I've been afraid of reaching for god in this way, because of my fear of self-rejection, afraid that my upbringing will be my destiny.
I prayed under my breath, God, save me from mirrors. Give me the bravery to grow into myself.