Hope you all are doing well in sha Allah ❤︎
Being a muslimah who decides to wear the hijab in a not-so-conservative family can be hard, not that it may not be hard for others as well. For many years I wanted to put on the hijab, but due to family members holding me down, literally saying don’t do it, though we are muslim, my hijab journey was delayed. My immediate and extended family are in love with beautifying themselves and wearing nice clothes. They love the glamour, they love fashion. All of these factors made it hard for me as I knew I wouldn’t fit in (my mom’s side of the family do observe the hijab, but we usually see my dad’s side of the family more and so they have a greater impact on me). Pakistanis in general love being modern and western, at least in my experience, so I was afraid of what I’d go through. However, I knew that eventually I’ll put on the hijab and face everyone, so let’s be strong today and just do it.
I remember the day I first wore the hijab, August 25th, 2015. We were going out to dinner with my aunt’s family that night, whilst getting ready I put on a black scarf with fear and nervousness. I ran downstairs and showed my family that enough is enough, this is who I want to be. Some had horrified faces, please take it off they said. Sad, in a Muslim family this is what we sometimes have to face. Other members, on the other hand, supported me that night, however after a few days, even they started asking me to take it off. Anyway, for dinner, I walked in to the restaurant where my cousins, aunt, and uncle were seated. The women gave me words of encouragement while the men looked down upon me. Abey yeh kya kiya tumne?! (Dude, what did you do?!) commented one of the males. With a smile I brushed his comment off.
Relatives started calling my mother asking if I was forced and complaining why I put on the hijab. Really? What’s it to you? How is my hijab affecting you so much that you decided to call my mom and complain about it? Though it seemed the whole world was against my decision, I stuck to my hijab knowing its worth.
Many continued to pass negative comments, but there were positive ones too. May people told me that I look nice with a hijab, though I did not feel nicer as I felt like I look like a total aunty in a hijab, but these compliments were nice to hear.
My confidence was at peak during the first few weeks, I was not afraid of being myself. However as time went by, more and more people spread their negativity, especially family members. The worst was when a woman took out her son’s biodata for marriage, saw my hijab, asked oh aap hijab pehenti hain? (oh, you wear a hijab?) and put it back into her purse. Although I couldn’t care less about her or her son, I was outraged of the fact that just because I wear a hijab, I’m suddenly not worthy enough for your son? What a backwards thought!
Due to all the negativity and due to my own negativity of thinking how I don’t look nice in a hijab, I lost the peak of confidence I had and I struggle once again. Nonetheless, with sabr, I still sayed strong with my hijab and wear it everyday. Now, I’m working my way to being confident and loving my hijab once again.
Bottom line is, it’s hard enough to put on a hijab for some muslimahs, please don’t make it harder for them.