I didn’t know what happiness was, until I had finally decided to permanently have the hijab put on. It had been in the moments where I had stared in the mirror with this extra piece of cloth covering my head, that I realised, any sense of security that I had prior to this, was nothing short of an illusion.
Being amongst the very many teenage girls and young women, who savor and classify beauty as something that is constantly seen on the covers of magazines, or models on billboards above, I had fallen ‘victim’ and had become amongst those who were insecure about how they looked, of which had then begun to affect how I felt as a person.
Many nights were spent struggling to look into mirrors, simply because every time I did, I was never pleased with what I saw staring back. There were always things that I was unhappy with, be it a, tiny zit here, a big round nose, there, or a “Why can’t I be as beautiful as that girl?” here…it had become quite the ritual for me.
It was in such moments, with such logics of what the mass media defined, and had thus led me to believe, as beautiful, I had fallen prey to the whims of dunya.
My definition of a confident woman had been based upon those who had the guts to dorn short shorts and mid-rif tops. And Wallahi, I had envied those women. They were the ones I was secretly wishing, I was more like. The ones I wish I could be.
With those thoughts and wishes, I had made myself believe, that I wouldn’t be able to find a husband, if I were to have the hijab on. I’m already bound to be having troubles finding one, without, how could I possibly find one with it?
But Allahu Akhbar! God is truly Great. You know the saying that goes “The People that come into your lives, are there, for a reason.”? Well. Allah Azawajjal had simply showed me just what those reasons were, and at the same time, had placed my fears to rest. He had sent me passing angels, as I have now come to call them, to make me see and understand, just how wrong I had been. By the will of Allah, these amazing few had taught me lessons, like no other.
That and amongst all things else, had made me realize that the partner I ought to be wanting, should be one that is willing and is able to see, my true beauty.
The beauty inside of me, instead of the beauty that the naked eye can see. I’d much rather have someone who respects me enough, and is appreciative of the fact that I am practicing my deen, then otherwise. To be the one that I would need, and to be the one who is able to guide me.
I had finally understood what the meaning of true beauty was. It hadn’t been about having the glossiest hair, or the sharpest of noses. Although very pleasing to the eyes, such beauties were only skin deep. They had been nothing but an illusion of the dunya. None of it was ever permanent. The time will come, when it will all fade. After a few very long years, I had finally realized that, no struggle is worth the fading outcome. I had finally learned that confidence doesn’t lie in being daring enough to wear the skimpiest of clothes, rather it’s about being brave enough to cover and protect one’s self from preying eyes, and lust filled chatter. It truly takes greater strength and perseverance, to not flaunt what God has blessed us with.
In short, my perspective of things flipped a whole 360°. My views had changed almost entirely.
But…I still had one thing stopping me.
Truly, this had been my greatest of worries in my days of thinking through my decision on whether or not to wear the hijab.
I had feared, that I would become a hypocrite. For there were still so many empty slots for me to fill. And so, how could I possibly become this walking symbol of Islam, when there were so many things that I have yet to make perfect? Because that was how I saw the hijab. It is a symbol of a believing woman. I believed, but I feared it hadn’t been enough. I had convinced myself that I would only wear the hijab, when I was perfect in my deen.
I’ve always been a practicing Muslim, but I don’t think I’ve ever truly understood what it meant to be one. Through learning the major parts of the religion, I hadn’t acknowledged the smaller parts of it. The part that made it what it is. I had chased after the approval of the creations, I had searched through the temporality of the dunya, seeking and hoping, that I would find the peace I so badly longed for. I was ignorant of the words of God. I had heard, but I never truly listened.
I hadn’t realized that by the fact thay God had created me as a human, had simply meant that I’m not meant to be perfect. The creation was made, to make mistakes. Take Prophet Adam a.s for example, through his story, we knew that he had made a mistake. And he is a prophet. And prophets are humans, too. Which simply shows that they are not immune to making mistakes. They are not entirely perfect, for perfection is an attribute of the Creator and not His creations.
We as humans could only strive and try to be perfect, but that is all we could ever do. Perfection, truly is beyond us.
And so, if I had based my not wearing the hijab on my politically correct reasoning, when will I ever be wearing the hijab, if at all?
If not now, then when?
If when, then why not now?
Indeed, it had been through the people that played a hand in guiding me, and pushing me onto a path much greater, that I finally decided that it was truly time for me to wear the hijab.
Wearing the hijab is still a constant struggle. But for once, it’s a struggle worth fighting through. Because at the end of this road, all I could do, is love my Lord and myself, even more.
“Stop hating on yourself for not being perfect. If God wanted perfection, He would have made you an angel.” – Yasmin Mogahed
Note : In no way is this post criticizing anyone, nor is it meant to be a means of judgement. What has been shared is simply per-basis of how it had been, and how it sometimes still is, for me. Wearing the hijab doesn’t determine a person’s level of piety, for we all struggle in our very own ways. Neither is it an excuse for us to be on a path of self-righteousness. That isn’t what it’s about. The hijab is simply a beginning, a journey, to God Willing, a greater you 🙂