“As-salamu alaykum, my name is Nida and I am from Texas. I wanted to share my hijab story in the hopes that it might help a sister who is still struggling to wear the hijab.
It’s been about 11 months since I started to wear a Hijab.
The hardest part isn’t wearing the hijab everyday. The hardest part was getting myself prepared to achieve my wish and goal.
I always wanted to wear a hijab. I even recall being in 6th grade and ultimately deciding that I would finally wear one and then letting go.
I wanted to wear a hijab because it represents my identity as a Muslim. The scarf on my head, the loose clothes that cover my body. It’s my way of showing the world that their perception of how I should look doesn’t decide how I should dress myself. No, I let Allah decide that. I always saw a hijab as my own shield/weapon from the world.
Nonetheless, through all that I thought, my fear did conquer me for long. The fear of the stares, judging, or even harassment. They were strong. We all have this underlying desire to fit into society. Sometimes we sacrifice a piece of who we are to achieve that, as did I. I wanted to fit in and feel protected because I looked “normal” like everyone else.
My struggle continued for years until I finally started to change. I decided enough was enough and I needed to give the hijab a chance.
This is when people wonder, what made you change and what happened to those fears?
The fear before wearing the hijab stayed and as far as changing, one of my favaorite verses in the Quran, Surah 14 Ibrahim(Abraham) 14:4, “……and Allah sends astray [thereby] whom He wills and guides whom He wills. And He is the Exalted in Might, the Wise.”
That’s enough to say. Allah wanted to guide me, Subhan Allah! I knew that because I had always had that desire to become better in my faith. Also, ever since I started college, I had this unknown desire to learn and study my religion more. I could feel the guidance inside of myself.
Allah knew that I had these fears, he knew my struggle. However, I used to pray that he give me the strength to face my fears and wear a hijab. I decided that over the summer break when I would have time to myself, I would try adjusting to wearing a hijab. The first day of Ramadan is when I started.
The day I finally wore the hijab. It was as if I had worn it my whole life. It didn’t phase me. So much so that I don’t even recall the first few days of me wearing a hijab. Allah quietly gave me the strength I needed. I was complete. Alhumdulliah!
The feeling of the struggle to wear a hijab and the feeling of joy once you achieve that goal is not describable. It is something that comes from the soul. It is ones personal connection with her creator.
Life with the hijab. Maybe I’ve had good luck or something because I can proudly say I haven’t been harassed until this day. As far as the judgment and the stares. Here is the thing, people will always judge and stare at us if we don’t fit their definition of “normal.”
From my experience I’ve learned that there are actually many people who’s definition of “normal” does include a girl with a hijab, hence they don’t stare. As for others, well I don’t really pay much attention.
However, if our eyes were to meet when they are staring, I give them a smile and they usually smile back. We all have this connection with one another, no matter what race or color, it’s called being a human.
I might need to work a little extra hard now to show people that I’m not a terrorist or something just because I wear a hijab. However, I also know ever person I shoot a smile at or help in any situation will look at me and know that I am a Muslim and that Muslims might not be perfect but the teachings of Islam are.
I just hope that my story can help some sister that is struggling to wear a hijab see that everything gets better with time and with the help of Allah. Also, I hope this helps break the misconception that the hijab for us Muslim women is a sign of oppression vs desire.
By Nida from Texas