Will You Be There For Me?

16

A few months ago, I was walking with a sister who normally doesn’t wear hijab. We had just prayed Jumu’ah at my public school, and she had decided to keep her scarf on that day. As we walked through school to class, two things happened: people (supposedly her friends) either ignored her completely, or blatantly stared in shock. Oh yes, there were also the few odd bursts of laughter.

I was shocked at their reactions. These were people who called themselves her friends.

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Instead of doing our work, we spent the next two classes discussing the scarf on my friend’s head. Our teachers even joined in on the discussion with the students. Why, I asked them all, would you react that way? Although most of them were non-Muslim, the reason they gave was because she was “unfit” to wear hijab… Unfit to wear hijab? It was a strange moment in time, watching these people pass such a judgment over her.  Some of them said she must be wearing a scarf for someone else,  to make that person happy. Others argued that she just “wasn’t the type” of person to wear hijab.

I held back my rage.

“Why is it okay in your eyes for me to wear hijab, but not her?” I asked.

“Well… Because it’s you,” they said.

Good thing it was Friday. I needed a weekend to recover from all this.

Oh, but how quick are people to judge! Shaytan probably had a part in this — shaytan almost definitely had a part in this — it seemed that he jumped in right away.  In the moment this sister was obeying Allah ta’ala, shatyan used her friends against her. They assumed she was unworthy of hijab and that she was doing it for the wrong intention. They never even gave her the chance to wear it.

I wondered how many sisters must be out there who want to wear hijab, but are shut down as soon as they try. I wondered, where were all the people who could give her encouragement and support?

Even through this incident, though, it was amazing for me to see this: the worth of hijab. Unconsciously, all the people there that day, Muslim and non-Muslim alike, affirmed the purity and greatness of hijab. Hijab isn’t something to take lightly.

In a way, it was nice to see they “cared;” but their reactions annoyed me, and I’m sure they hurt this sister, too. But the sister, may Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala reward her immensely, stuck with the scarf throughout the day. I remember seeing tears in her eyes. At times, I was in awe over her strength to persevere through this test Allah ta’ala placed upon her. I make du’aa for her to wear hijab full time with understanding, and I humbly ask of you to do so as well – for her, and for all our sisters around the world.