When people used to ask me if I was feeling hot wearing my hijab on a hot day I’d typically say something like, “Did you know that people who live in the desert actually wear more clothes to protect themselves from the sun (true story)?” Or, “Me? Feel hot wearing layers upon layers of clothing in 95 degree weather with no shade in this super hot park where you see sweat running down my face? No, hijab regulates my body temperature and cools me down!”
But then l realised that all of those attempts to make hijab seem more palatable was detrimental to ME and the raw beauty which is the struggle to please God. Do you want to know if I’m hot in this?
YES I feel super hot wearing hijab on a hot day in the hot beating sun. Forget the way people look at me and the comments, the assumptions and the stereotypes- the physical act of wearing the hijab sometimes is a struggle (ask me in those winter months though ?)
But it’s a struggle I choose to take on and see as a blessing and an honour. It’s a struggle that I feel strengthens and empowers me. It’s a struggle that for me is worth all of the pain and toil. I wear it in the hope that in every minute I miss the feeling of the wind and the cool breeze- that God will accept it even more than the times when it is easy.
And if you’re reading this, you might ask- Would a loving God really want you to suffer- can’t you be modest and not cover with so much?
Here’s my answer: God is the Most Compassionate, the Constantly Merciful. He is the Source of Peace and the Source of Love. He is the Guardian and the Generous, the Forgiving and the Forebearing. And because I know that what He has sent in revelations from Him, from Adam to Noah, from Abraham to Moses, from Jesus to Muhammad, upon them all be peace, is truth and Divine wisdom- I trust Him.
In the footsteps of my namesake, Virgin Mary, who always is depicted covering her hair- I follow, praying I can emulate her in the fierce ways she stood up, in the powerful ways she spoke up and in the humble ways she worshipped Him. I dress this way in gratitude to Him for His bounties even in the greatest hardship.
Even if sometimes it’s annoying and frustrating and so, so hard.
So do I feel hot wearing my hijab? Sometimes yes, suffocatingly so. But in the struggle is a sweetness. In the sweetness, there is worship. And in that worship, I find joy.
Many women struggle with hijab in different ways. In the midst of your struggle whatever it is and however it is, remember: God sees your struggle and He appreciates your every effort.
You aren’t a hypocrite. You’re a spiritual warrior.
This was originally posted by Maryam Amir on her Facebook page and has been published here with her permission.