“Sister Cover Your Modesty-sister cover your modesty? How can he give this to me? What does he mean? Am I not modest? How am I being immodest?”
“No! I am not stepping out of the house without my hijab, if I go I go with it on or I don’t go at all.”
Both of these statements were made by me, the former was made when I was 16 when an uncle, a family friend gifted this book to me titled ‘Sister Cover your Modesty’ and I was so offended by the title perhaps not even clearly understanding what modesty meant at the time.
And a few years later I found myself standing up for the very same piece of cloth that identified me as a modest Muslim woman.
Honestly, growing up I didn’t even know that hijab was even a thing in our deen, I only saw a few people among my family and relatives wear it and even that wasn’t as an Islamic obligation, it carried cultural nuances to it that I barely understood.
In my story and my experience, adapting hijab wasn’t something I woke up to one day and said: “Today is a good day to cover-up”, no, it was a consequence of a bigger transformative journey, it was part of my self-discovery journey; you see I didn’t know who I was, the parts of me I thought I knew turned out to be incorrect, I thought I knew these fragments about myself but at a certain point those fragments dissolved and left me without any solid ground beneath my feet.
I was falling, I was panicking, hyperventilating, desperately trying to hold onto something that will grant me a sense of security, that would protect me from this unknown, unseen devastating ‘whatever’ that awaited me at the end of that fall-now this is the exact description of what was going on in my head at the time or what it felt like سبحان الله.
The truth of what happened was I fell, yes I did, and I landed, but my landing was on something so reliable that I never looked back since. I landed on familiar grounds but the way I was seeing these grounds in front of me was in a way I never really saw before, like a veil had been lifted off my eyes, and for the first time, I found comfort in the familiar.
What I didn’t see before was Allah’s Love and His Mercy, and when I saw that, there was no way I couldn’t live my life being in servitude to Him. My hijab is a consequence of my obedience to my Maker, I simply put that piece of cloth on my head because my Creator Commanded me to, once my heart received the tawfeeq through my Rabb, I didn’t question why He is asking me to cover, it simply made sense to do so, because my Master loves me so much and He wouldn’t ask me to do something without there being goodness in it for me, I put that piece of cloth on my head because it was impossible for me to not love and obey my Rabb, for being my Rabb.
Wearing my hijab was effortless for it revealed my true identity to me, my identity as a slave of Allah.
I hear and I obey, it was so simple.
سبحان الله from a naive and confused, people-pleasing human being, to someone who found Allah through her turmoils, the hijab became a symbol of my identity, comfort, obedience, and a covenant made to Allah الحمد لله.
Years later, while visiting my mums, I found that very same book lying on the shelf in my room, that I was gifted all those years ago, I picked it up with a memory of who I was and what I had become, and overcome by emotion, I cried, cried for my naivety, cried in appreciation and gratitude for my guidance, and made du’aa for the said uncle for gifting me such a valuable gem. I didn’t know and still don’t know what I did to deserve Allah’s mercy in my life and I am forever in gratitude for this tawfeeq and hidaya to have descended upon me الحمد لله.
Read more posts on Hijab from other sisters on their blogs and Instagram.
Check their links below:
1. @knowledgedunes 4 points about the Hijab Verse in the Quran
3. @JeddahMom Hijabi Girls Can Too
4. @adeebajafri_official Looking Up: A Reflection on Hijab
5. @muslimah_mina My hijab makes me feel empowered.
6. @mrshashimi Podcast Story for kids – “Baba’s Hijab Help”
8. @the.osemommey A letter to my teenage self
9. @ilmaeducation Quran Art Journaling 33:59
10. @sunnah_hearts My Hijab poem written by an nine year old
11. @atfalnaeducation “Now you wear Hijab” A complimentary pom for your Muslim tweens.
12. @motheringthenest How do I impress the importance of hijab in my child?
Seema Umm Rayyan, is a certified professional life coach, she focuses on spiritual connection and creative journaling in her coaching practice. She assists women and teen girls in their journey, exploring contentment, so they may discover a deeper connection with Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala.