The Sun Will Draw Close

10

sun_near

Image courtesy of: popsharlow
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I was at an outdoor event a few weeks ago as a volunteer for a non-profit organization. The day was hot and humid, with not a cloud in sight. To top it off, we were located in the middle of a busy intersection in the early afternoon amidst traffic, noise, pedestrians, and did I mention the humidity? A few minutes after I arrived with my friends, we were busy setting up and meeting with the other volunteers when a brother, who was also a volunteer for the organization, gave a one-over at my outfit (hijab and full sleeves) and after chuckling, said, “Don’t you wish you were a guy?

I am pretty sure he did not mean to say it offensively; after all we had known each other through the organization for more than a few months and I knew him not to be the rude type. I bet he just felt like he would not have been able to bear the heat without his t-shirt and shorts, and I understood where he came from. Despite such a bold remark, I did not hesitate for even a second before replying with a confident smile and an assertive “No.”

I have noticed as a hijabi that once summer comes around, some people start feeling sorry for you all of a sudden and the “covered-up outfits” they think you are forced to wear. Even in high school, when girls would don mini-skirts as soon as the temperature rose above 15 degrees, they would incredulously question me about how I am able to tolerate the heat with pants on. I admit at times it would get to me, but I always reminded myself that if the Mothers of the Believers were able to gracefully adorn long, loose garments under the desert heat of the Arabian Sun, then I could surely wear pants and a full-sleeved shirt during a three-month Canadian summer.

I have always felt that dressing in the summer as a hijabi has its benefits. First of all, you are not being insolently leered at by passing male strangers. For me, the hijab has always been a sort of protection, as well as something that sets me apart from other women and dignifies everything I do; from the way I walk to the way I talk and dress.

Second of all, a loose flowing top does wonders to cool you; more, I am sure, than a skin-tight tank top could. There have been numerous occasions when I have seen girls wearing teeny-tiny clothes get burned under the scorching heat of the sun, while I have been left feeling cool and content in my modest clothing.

I am not trying to say that wearing the hijab is a breeze (no pun intended). In fact, it can get quite hard at times when everyone around you is seemingly comfortable wearing next-to-nothing, and you are the only odd one dressed. Remind yourself that perhaps covering up for the sake of Allah ‘Azza Wa Jall today through all types of weather may give you in return protection and shade when you need it the most:

In a hadith narrated by al-Miqdad ibn al-Aswad:

Allah’s Messenger salla Allahu alayhi wasallam said: “On the Day of Resurrection, the sun will draw so close to the people that there will only be a distance of one mile left. The people will be submerged in perspiration according to their deeds, some up to their knees, some up to the waist, and some will have the bridle of perspiration,” and, while saying this, Allah’s Apostle salla Allahu alayhi wasallam pointed his hand towards his mouth.

Insha’Allah, pleasing Allah through our choice of clothing may inevitably please us in the akhirah.

Ten minutes after I pleasantly assured the brother that, “No, I do not wish I were a guy”, he went into the nearest convenience store and as a kind gesture, bought a bag of ice-cold freezies which he offered to all the hijabi volunteers.

See, didn’t I say being a hijabi has its perks?