I never thought the day would come that a real live “not your typical bais yaakov girl” would exist…but low and behold – I received this from a real live one.
By Zissy Malka – name is made up by author to protect her shidduch chances, ironic eh?
Born and raised in the Orthodox area of my home town, it’s truly amazing I am able to write this brief commentary from my office at one of our country’s leading TV stations. Yes, I am a frum from birth, shomer shabbos, skirt wearing, single girl who decided to break away from the OT/PT teacher’s college mold that my friends settled into and work in TV. When all of my classmates at the local Bais Yakov were discussing cake recipes and their dreams of getting a position as an assistant in the local cheder, I was thinking ‘wow there has got to be something more interesting then this!’. Now don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with being a teacher or a speech therapist. Lots of girls look forward to the day when they can help others in chinuch, pronunciation or even in dental hygiene and kol hakavod to them. For me, well, I needed something more.
During my time in University (yes, Bais Yakov approves of higher education but doesn’t promote it), I decided to throw caution to the wind, literally and took flying lessons in my spare time. “Wow, a frum girl taking flying lessons” shadchans would ask me? “Yes”, I would reply, “it’s the same as driving, except you’re in the sky”. They didn’t seem to agree but couldn’t provide me with a clear reason for why they suddenly said that their match for me wouldn’t work out. Great. At the time I figured, if the guy was too frum for me to become a pilot, he wasn’t for me anyway. Though 8 years have since passed and I am still an unmarried “tragic” case of the shidduch crisis, I still stand by my belief in finding the right guy for me.
Graduation comes along and B”H so do my first, second and third jobs in the television industry. “What?! You’re an FFB, looking for a guy who wears a black hat on shabbos and you work in TV” the ever harping shadchans would scream. (Now being a pilot didn’t seem that bad). “A plane, fine. But TV?!” that is just shiksavatik. It didn’t matter that I was never on camera, and sat at a desk behind a computer answering a phone like any other frum BJ graduate working as a secretary. It was more the location that seemed to be the issue. I still wear tznius clothing, bring my lunch everyday (in my city, downtown is like living in a forest when it comes to Kosher restaurants), leave work at 2 on Fridays and choose to keep my office socializing to a minimum outside the workplace. What’s even better (or worse?), I actually LOVE my job! The crazy loud atmosphere, the constant stream of new people (some famous, some not as much) and the chance I have to be everywhere I want to be and try everything and anything I want to try within my religious guidelines.
YES I AM A FRUM single GIRL! Who just happens to work in television, flies planes and oh, did I mention I snowboard too (in a skirt over my snow pants, srsly)? There must be a guy out there who will date an ‘out of town’ girl who has a super cool job (cooler then his?), has super fun hobbies (I started all girls ballet as well) and who will make the trek in for dates here and there. Sure! On the condition I quit it all and move to his New York apartment to raise a family. Do I give up my dream life that I have worked so hard to achieve, for a guy who says, “yeah that’s great, now its time you quit that and work on your real career, being a mother?”
I’m going to go watch Leona Lewis sound check in the studio while I think about this.
You could email her at ZissyMalka@gmail.com