There are a lot of ideas and opinions floating around on the internet and media about the hijab. In some spaces, there is a lot of confusion. In some, a lot of support. While in others, a lot of negativity. We often face a lot of criticism, judgement, and expectations from people who do not know very much about the hijab. And maybe, after the hundredth time of explaining that we do not shower with it on, we get a little tired. In other words, we feel tired of talking about the hijab.
It becomes tiring when people cannot truly see you and only focus on the external aspects of the hijab. It can be tiring when everyone and their neighbour seems to be obsessed with our decision to wear one. We’re tired of not getting the job we want because our hijab doesn’t display the right ‘image’, and we’re tired of trying to clarify to people that wearing the hijab is not a symbol of oppression from our fathers and brothers. We’re tired of trying to explain ourselves.
And sure, this may exhaust us, but should we feel exhausted? Should we ever tire of trying to show people the beauty of the hijab? I sincerely don’t think so. And this is why:
If you have chosen to wear the hijab, you likely have your own set of beautiful reasons, with pleasing Allah (swt) at the top of the list. And that is what the hijab is: a commandment from our Creator and we obey in an effort to please Him and gain closeness to Him.
So, having understood this; having chosen to wear the hijab ourselves for this reason, should we then tire of speaking about it? No.
As Muslimahs, we understand that every time an ignorant comment comes our way, it means more ajr for us. Every time someone treats us differently because of the hijab, it means more reward. Every time someone denies us a worldly opportunity, we know that in shaa Allah there is something better waiting for us. So then, why would we tire?
This shouldn’t exhaust us. We shouldn’t expect others to fully understand the hijab or even accept it. What a beautiful honour it is to help try and guide another’s thinking or to defend the commandment of Allah! Shouldn’t we rather hope that people ask us about this part of our religion than to treat us as if it does not even exist? I don’t want to be treated like everyone else. I want people to notice my hijab, and I want to talk about it.
When the Qur’an was revealed, Allah commanded the believing women to cover themselves when they were in the presence of non-mahram men. The reasoning Allah gave at that immediate moment was “That will be better, so that they may be recognized and not annoyed” [33:59]. The beauty of this verse is “so that they may be recognized”. Dear sisters, Allah understands our struggle the most. Allah feels for us the most. By commanding us to wear the hijab, and by us being recognized, Allah knows the challenges that come with that. So, the next time you feel tired of people picking at your image, just remember this verse and try to envision the reward your Creator has awaiting for your obedience and patience, in shaa Allah.