“All Are Welcome Here” L&D Nurse Shares Daily Life As An Orthodox Jew To 1.6m TikTok Followers

Can you touch a trans woman? Do you need to remove your nail polish before mikvah? Are you allowed to work on a puzzle on Shabbos? Are you allowed to provide healthcare to only female patients?

These are some of the questions TikTok influencer and Labor and Delivery Nurse Miriam Ezagui candidly responds to, with nuance, insight and grace on an almost daily basis to her 1.6 million followers. Miriam is also a mom of 4 and an Orthodox Jew, who have become our new fave follow on the socials, filling our feed with cute videos with her kids, and insights into her daily life in Brooklyn, NYC.

She began creating videos in January 2022 and quickly gained a large following. We have no doubt her joyous demeanor coupled with a willingness to “go there”, and answer the most candid and even intimate of questions about her life (“is baby-making allowed on Shabbos?” for instance!) is the secret sauce to becoming a must-follow account.

“All are welcome here,” says Miriam in a short intro video (shared below). Knowing the significance of having such a platform and voice, Miriam also takes the opportunity to speak with her bubbe (grandmother) Lilly Malnick, a Holocaust survivor, on Holocaust Remembrance Day. Lilly, who is 94-years-young, tells stories of her experience as a teenager surviving the Aushwitz concentration camp during the Holocaust, a genocide that murdered over 6 million Jews, as well as several millions more marginalized communities, throughout Europe in the 1930s and 1940s. Lilly tells stories of living through this atrocity so that no one will ever forget.

@miriamezagui A little intro 💞 #jewishtiktok #orthodoxjewishlife #holocaustsurvivor #babywearing #jewishthings ♬ original sound – Miriam Ezagui

Miriam is demystifying any stereotypes or prejudices in an open and candid way. Her countless followers, who make up a diverse selection of many different ethnicities, nationalities, races, religions, genders, sexual orientations and more, respond to her videos overwhelmingly with positive comments, and lots of questions about Orthodox Judaism and aspects of her life, which she happily answers. There is no room for hate speech on Miriam’s TikTok feed. Her aim is to create a respectful dialogue to and from her followers, building bridges to learn from and embrace one another’s differences. 

“One of the reasons why I share here is that I’m breaking down walls, and I’m giving people a window into my life so that they can have a better understanding of how Orthodox Jews live,” says Miriam.

From the laws of the Torah, including customs, holidays and rituals, what one can and cannot do on Shabbos (the Jewish Sabbath from Sundown to Sundown Friday to Saturday nights) and keeping a Kosher kitchen (which involves not only eating dairy and meat separately, but also separating the utensils, cookware, sinks and ovens used to serve and prepare them), Miriam explains it all.  

@miriamezagui #onthisday today is Yom Hashoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day. This is a video I shared one year ago of my Bubby sharing one of her memories from the concentration camps. #yomhashoah #holocaustmemorialday #holocaust #jewish #neverforget ♬ original sound – Miriam Ezagui

We also follow Miriam as she partakes in customs specifically for Orthodox Jewish women. This includes shopping for and styling wigs, known as a “sheitel” in Yiddish, which most Orthodox Jewish women wear to signify that they are married. And we take a journey with Miriam to a women’s mikvah, a ritual bath in which observant married Jewish women are required to dip once a month, seven days after the end of their menstrual cycle, which is known in Hebrew as “Niddah.” 

As a registered and practicing labor and delivery nurse, who works in a busy New York hospital that delivers over 6,000 babies a year, Miriam also teaches childbirth classes. In addition to her L&D expertise, we love her baby wearing and wrap videos, demonstrating how to assemble one, and how versatile they are for a busy working mom of 4 getting around in a city like NYC!

We had the chance to go one-on-one with Miriam to learn more about her passion for sharing about her faith, her family, and the importance of creating content where everyone feels welcome.

@miriamezagui #answer to @BiscutsAndAvey am I allowed to touch a trans women? #trans #lgbtq #jewish #gender ♬ original sound – Miriam Ezagui

Can you tell us a little bit about where you grew up, your career as a nurse, and your background with Orthodox Judaism?

I grew up in Maryland, born to two Jewish parents but my family was not Orthodox when I was born. They became more religious when I was about 9/10 years old. Growing up I always knew I wanted to work in the delivery room, it was just a matter of narrowing down which profession.

You joined TikTok in January 2022 to share more about your family and faith life with the world. What was the pivotal moment (or moments!) that made you want to do this?

My TikTok account started as a babywearing account, and I didn’t openly share that I was Jewish till a couple months in. Last year when Whoopi Goldberg came out with the statement that the Holocaust wasn’t about race but two groups of white people… that really moved me to speak out, and not from a place of anger. I realized in that moment how misconceptions can so easily lead to anti-Semitism and I felt an obligation to speak out and do my part to educate. 

What have been some of the most common misconceptions about your faith that you have enjoyed talking about and challenging the most on your account?

There are a lot of misconceptions that come from Christianity, Judaism is a completely different religion but some common misconceptions are people thinking I cover my hair for modesty, that women are oppressed, and I find there are a lot of misconceptions around intimacy.   

@miriamezagui Replying to @bigbattyalee It did not factor into my decision at all. I’ve always had a love and passion for labor and delivery and I can provide physical care to anyone that needs it. #laboranddelivery #nurse #nursesoftiktok #labor ♬ original sound – Miriam Ezagui

While social media can be a place for lots of negativity, can you share about the positivity you have come across, received, and seen that motivates you to continue your content creation?

Before I started my Jewish identity I had a long thing if it was something I wanted to do because I was scared of the negativity I might receive but it’s been overwhelmingly positive. I also believe that you get what you put out and I want my channel to be a safe place of all races, religions and minority groups.    

How do you respond to any negativity or trolls?

I usually respond with some type of humor or sarcasm. I try to keep it light while still providing education. 

What are some of your favorite type of videos to make, and topics to talk about?

I have a lot of fun making videos where we go on an adventure, maybe some place with my kids or I showcase some aspect of Jewish life like a visit to the matzah bakery.

For videos involving your girls, how many takes do you do, and how do you get them involved?

It’s usually just one take, sometimes the girls will request a retake of a shot. 

@miriamezagui Replying to @leilahmad_ there cannot be any separation between the mikvah waters and your body. #mikvah #jewish #nailpolish #bathhouse ♬ original sound – Miriam Ezagui

Why is it important for you to share about your faith, your culture, and your family as a content creator?

My goal is to give people a window into my life that they may not have otherwise had the opportunity to know or see. And my hope is by knowing more there will be less misconceptions and less anti-Semitism. 

How do you hope your videos and posts will allow for more nuance in conversations about religion, and specifically Orthodox Judaism?

My hope is people feel a connection to me through my channel in a positive light and they learn about Judaism from a Jew in a loving way and not something portrayed through TV, movies and news outlets as though can sometimes be skewed. 

For someone who is visiting your account for the first time, what do you hope they learn, and what do you hope makes them come back again?

My account is a place to have fun, laugh and learn. I never want someone to feel judged, my account is about me sharing my life, not preaching to another person how they should be living their life. All are welcome here. 

To learn more about her life, her work and her faith, follow Miriam on TikTok and Instagram. With endearing videos like the one below, how can you NOT follow her!

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