We’re all pretty much hearing the same thing.
Loving warnings from our family and/or friends to be careful when we go out and about into the world in our hijab. Posts on social media advising hijab-wearing Muslim women to be careful and consider their surroundings. Muslim women expressing fear and concern to be out and about in their hijab and visibly Muslim.
This isn’t the first time, nor will it be the last time.
Islamophobic and bias incidents against Muslims are on the rise
(as are anti-Semitic incidents). Targeted hate against the backdrop of relentless bombing in Gaza is on the rise, steaming off of social media pages and in real life.
Our dear sisters. We feel you. We are with you. We are you.
Some of you may be too young to have gone through this, but there are others who remember this very feeling post 9/11, when so many of us were fearful of our safety and targeted for being visibly Muslim. That fearful feeling paralyzed many of us for far too long. We’ve spent a long time since rebuilding; finding ourselves, our voices as Muslim women, and growing our confidence in who we are, our faith and relationship with Allah (S), our place in the communities in which we live, our power and in wearing hijab.
Image source: Haute Hijab
Now it is different. We know who we are. We are stronger. We don’t allow our citizenship and our rights as citizens of this land to be questioned, nor do we feel the need to compromise the love we have for the cultures and traditions of our motherlands. We are a major driving force in our communities. And so while many may try to shake and question our position and safety and even our identity, we need to stay the course and stand firm in our belief and unwavering self confidence and self worth – because without that, what do we have?
Do not let ANYONE make you feel less. You are a woman of God.
“After 9/11 we were told not to be seen in our hijabs. To be small. To hide. Don’t make too much noise - 20 years later, where did that get us? All it did was make us shrink. We lost pieces of ourselves. Our souls died, and we found ourselves in relationships, jobs, friendships - where we weren’t fully seen. Pieces of us showed up. Fragments.
“Today, we cannot teach our children the same thing. We cannot not be seen. Hijab is beautiful. It is the source of light humanity needs today, now more than ever. We are beacons of light, truth and strength.
“My beautiful sisters, wear your hijab with pride. Be all of yourself. Don’t hide parts of yourself. Will there be rough days? Of course. But it is those moments that will make you the warrior you were always meant to be.”
At Haute Hijab, in the pages of this blog and in the content we create on our social media pages, we’ve always been committed to supporting you on your hijab journey and your journey as a Muslim woman of strength, fortitude and power. We hold incredible power as Muslim women, an “invisible force-field that comes from within and the long line of distinguished Muslim women upon whose shoulders we stand.”
Consider the stories of Nusaybah bint Ka’b
, Al Khansa
, Nana Asma’u, Fatima Al-Fihri, Lubna of Cordoba and more. As Melanie writes, “We come from a long line of leaders, innovators, educators, warriors, artists, caregivers and scholars. They were outspoken, thoughtful and highly ambitious. They didn’t wait around for men to tell them what to do. They leaned into their relationship with their creator … “
Melanie at her home, praying and reflecting.
In times like these, we must draw strength from the women who came before us. We must trust in our Lord and His protection around us. Yes, we must be careful and vigilant, but also courageous and proud. Being visibly Muslim is a choice filled with all the emotions, feelings and strength of conviction that you have shared with us for years. We know things can be scary. We know you’ll have to make these decisions for yourself. We’re not here to judge.
But we also know that Allah (S) is with us, and we are with you. This dunya was never meant to be easy. It is a test, and we face it with all the love and strength we can muster. As you go about your daily routine, as you walk to classes on your college campus, or wait at the bus stop to go to school, or drop your kids to school, or go to the grocery store, or take part in a protest, begin with Bismillah and Ayatul Kursi.
Our dear sisters, take heart and trust in yourself. We are with you. And above all, trust in Allah (S).