This past Saturday Gabriela received her Hebrew name. At first I had thought that it was a small ceremony that I was mostly doing for my extended family’s benefit. Invitations went out and I felt that it was a minor detail in the myriad of events in our lives. I don’t think of myself as an especially religious person. I am spiritual and believe in my family traditions, but I don’t always understand or believe all the stories and practices of my religion. I feel invested in following the traditions of my ancestors. I feel grateful for the life I have been given and believe that there are subtle ways I can show my gratitude through religious practices (i.e. fasting for Yom Kippur or eating matzah for Passover). I am committed to passing on these customs to my children. Other than those things, I would not call myself religious per se. Saturday morning in the midst of the Torah ceremony, standing on the bimah (stage), I felt a special feeling that I had never felt before. Standing there with my new baby in my arms, my husband and son at my side, I felt pride. Pride for the fact that I had been Bat Mitzvahed on the same stage, pride for the fact that friends and family were smiling back at us, and pride that I was bringing up two Jewish children. And somewhere within all those feelings, I felt the biggest pride in the life I had chosen. I felt proud of the husband I married. I felt proud of the kids we are rearing. I felt proud that we were all groomed, dressed nicely and there relatively on time. I just stood there looking down at everyone and I was overcome with happiness. Happiness that I didn’t expect to have at my daughter’s baby naming. And afterward as everyone dined, I couldn’t help but feel like the luckiest person in the world. I don’t know if it was religion that swept over me, I’m clearly not running out to temple this upcoming weekend. There was a feeling of satisfaction for the person I have become, the family that I have and the children I am raising. And somewhere inside I think that I have Judaism to thank for that.